Monday 9 January 2023

Clinton, Hillary Rodham & Chelsea "The Book of Gutsy Women"

Clinton, Hillary Rodham & Chelsea "The Book of Gutsy Women: Favourite Stories of Courage and Resilience" - 2019

From Early Inspirations, Education Pioneers to Earth Defenders and Explorers and Inventors, from Healers, Athletes, Advocates and Activists to Storytellers, Elected Leaders and Groundbreakers and finishing with Women's Rights Champions, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton describe a lot of women who changed the world. You can find the name of all the women they describe in their book at the end of the book description. There are many, many whose names are so familiar with us and yet, quite a few that we might have never heard of but have to thank so much. The come from Nigeria, the UK, Pakistan, the USA, Russia, the Netherlands, Austria, Guatemala, Mexico, Italy, Canada, Kenya, Sweden, France, Poland, China, Somalia, Senegal, Japan, South Africa, Colombia, Liberia, Chile, India, Saudi-Arabia, Iraq, so from all over the world where they did their bit so that we could all have an easier life, a more just life.

A quote from the Girl Scouts handbook "How Girls Can Help Their Country" from 1913. "Wherever you go you will have the choice of good or bad reading, and as reading has such a lasting effect on the mind, you should try to read only good things" is an advice that is as valid today as it was a hundred years ago.

And another great one: "I don't study to know more, but to ignore less" Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz who lived in Mexico in the mid-seventeenth century.

Such a fantastic quote. When I was young, my parents didn't have enough money to send me to university, so I did an apprenticeship instead. But I remember at the end of that, I thought, and what now? Am I finished learning? Is there nothing else I can do from now on than what I learned so far? But I soon noticed there were courses I could visit and books I could read and there was a big world out there that would teach me a lot of things. Nowadays, that is even easier because there is so much you can do on the internet and so much you can find there if you really want to know.

In my life, I have experienced a lot of events where I was put down because I was a woman. My education might have been different had I been a boy, I was told that companies hired boys for jobs I applied for (in the office), guys were hired instead of giving me a promotion, not because I was not good enough but because I was a woman who "would get married and have children anyway". So, I am certainly grateful for these women trying to change things for the better, not always just for women but a lot of them have made this world a better one.

I know there could be lots of other women who are just as important as the ones in the book. They missed at least two from their list: Hillary and Chelsea Clinton. They are just as great heroes as the women they described.

From the back cover:

"Hillary Rodham Clinton and her daughter, Chelsea, share the stories of the gutsy women who have inspired them - women with the courage to stand up to the status quo, ask hard questions, and get the job done.

She couldn’t have been more than seven or eight years old. 'Go ahead, ask your question,' her father urged, nudging her forward. She smiled shyly and said, 'You’re my hero. Who’s yours?'

Many people - especially girls - have asked us that same question over the years. It’s one of our favorite topics.

HILLARY: Growing up, I knew hardly any women who worked outside the home. So I looked to my mother, my teachers, and the pages of Life magazine for inspiration. After learning that Amelia Earhart kept a scrapbook with newspaper articles about successful women in male-dominated jobs, I started a scrapbook of my own. Long after I stopped clipping articles, I continued to seek out stories of women who seemed to be redefining what was possible.

CHELSEA: This book is the continuation of a conversation the two of us have been having since I was little. For me, too, my mom was a hero; so were my grandmothers. My early teachers were also women. But I grew up in a world very different from theirs. My pediatrician was a woman, and so was the first mayor of Little Rock who I remember from my childhood. Most of my close friends’ moms worked outside the home as nurses, doctors, teachers, professors, and in business. And women were going into space and breaking records here on Earth.

Ensuring the rights and opportunities of women and girls remains a big piece of the unfinished business of the twenty-first century. While there’s a lot of work to do, we know that throughout history and around the globe women have overcome the toughest resistance imaginable to win victories that have made progress possible for all of us. That is the achievement of each of the women in this book.

So how did they do it? The answers are as unique as the women themselves. Civil rights activist Dorothy Height, LGBTQ trailblazer Edie Windsor, and swimmer Diana Nyad kept pushing forward, no matter what. Writers like Rachel Carson and Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie named something no one had dared talk about before. Historian Mary Beard used wit to open doors that were once closed, and Wangari Maathai, who sparked a movement to plant trees, understood the power of role modeling. Harriet Tubman and Malala Yousafzai looked fear in the face and persevered. Nearly every single one of these women was fiercely optimistic - they had faith that their actions could make a difference. And they were right.

To us, they are all gutsy women - leaders with the courage to stand up to the status quo, ask hard questions, and get the job done. So in the moments when the long haul seems awfully long, we hope you will draw strength from these stories. We do. Because if history shows one thing, it’s that the world needs gutsy women.

Harriet Tubman, Anna Pavlova, Isadora Duncan, Maria Tallchief, and Virginia Johnson, Helen Keller, Margaret Chase Smith, Margaret Bourke-White, Maria von Trapp, Anne Frank, Rigoberta Menchú Tum, Jackie Joyner-Kersee and Florence Griffith Joyner, Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, Margaret Bancroft, Juliette Gordon Low, Maria Montessori and Joan Ganz Cooney, Mary McLeod Bethune, Esther Martinez, Daisy Bates, Patsy Mink, Bernice Sandler, and Edith Green, Ruby Bridges Hall,
Malala Yousafzai, Marjory Stoneman Douglas, Rachel Carson, Jane Jacobs and Peggy Shepard, Jane Goodall and "The Trimates", Wangari Maathai, Alice Min Soo Chun, Greta Thunberg, Caroline Herschel and Vera Rubin, Ada Lovelace and Grace Hopper, Margaret Knight and Madam C.J. Walker, Marie Curie and Irène Joliot-Curie, Hedy Lamarr, Sylvia Earle, Sally Ride, Mae Jemison, Florence Nightingale, Clara Barton, Elizabeth Blackwell, Rebecca Lee Crumpler, and Mary Edwards Walker, Betty Ford, Mathilde Krim, Dr. Gao Yaojie, Dr. Hawa Abdi, Flossie Wong-Staal, Molly Melching, Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha, Vaccinators, Alice Coachman and Wilma Rudolph, Junko Tabei, Billie Jean King, Diana Nyad, Abby Wambach, Michelle Kwan, Venus and Serena Williams, Ibtihaj Muhammad, Tatyana McFaddenn, Caster Semenya, Aly Raisman, Dorothy Height and Sojourner Truth, Ida B. Wells, Eleanor Roosevelt, Elizabeth Peratrovich, Rosa Parks and Claudette Colvin, Coretta Scott King, Dolores Huerta, The Peacemakers, Victoria Mxenge, Ai-jen Poo, Sarah Brady, Gabby Giffords, Nelba Màrquez-Green, Shannon Watts, and Lucy McBath, Nza-Ari Khepra, Emma Gonzàlez, Naomi Wadler, Edna Chavez, Jazmine Wildcat, and Julia Spoor, Becca Heller, Maya Angelou, Mary Beard, Jineth Bedoya Lima, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, America Ferrera, Ali Stroker, Amani Al-Khatahtbeh, Bella Abzug, Shirley Chisholm, Ann Richards, Geraldine Ferraro, Barbara Jordan, Barbara Mikulski, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Wilma Mankiller, Michelle Bachelet, Danica Roem, Frances Perkins, Katharine Graham, Constance Baker Motley, Edie Windsor, Ela Bhatt, Temple Grandin, Ellen DeGeneres, Maya Lin, Sally Yates, Kimberly Bryant and Reshma Saujani, Rosa May Billinghurst, The Suffragists, Sophia Duleep Singh, Fraidy Reiss, Manal al-Sharif, Nadia Murad"


  1. This sounds like a great book. Here's to gutsy women everywhere!

  2. I love the content of the book...Hillary, not so much. But I will still read it.

    1. She also does talk about herself (as well as Chelsea) when presenting the women. But I think you still would like it.

    2. Good to know. I feel no way one way or another about Chelsea. I will look for it!

    3. I hope you'll enjoy it, Sarah.