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To agree with Women's hour power list for most influential women in the last 70 years.

(45 Posts)
quencher Wed 14-Dec-16 12:30:18

The 2016 Woman's Hour Power List
Winner: Margaret Thatcher - First female British prime minister from 1979-1990

**Helen Brook - Set up Brook Advisory Centres in 1964 offering contraceptive advice to unmarried women

**Barbara Castle - Labour MP for Blackburn (1945-1979) and brought in the Equal Pay Act in 1970

**Germaine Greer - Australian writer, recognised as one of the major voices of the feminist movement

**Jayaben Desai - Prominent leader of the strikers in the Grunwick dispute in London in 1976

**Bridget Jones - The protagonist of Bridget Jones's Diary, written by Helen Fielding

**Beyonce - US singer and songwriter who emerged as part of Destiny's Child before a hit solo career

I also, agree to the reasons why the queen didn't make the list.

M0stlyHet Wed 14-Dec-16 13:05:55

The one thing I disagree with is Bridget Jones. The women on the list should be real people. Yes, I realise as a fictional character she's much loved, there's a whole set of essays to be written on her cultural role as a way of giving women permission to love their imperfections and ordinary-ness - but she is still not real.

Can you imagine a men's power list with James Bond or Captain America on it? And coming on top of Wonderwoman as UN ambassador (I think she's now lost this role) it's just another "ah yes, women of power, let's come up with some daft screwball joke additions to the list, because it's only the little women isn't it? Pat their heads and patronise them."

Likewise, not sure about the inclusion of Beyonce. Making a lot of money from selling songs people like is not the same as changing the world (for good or bad - latter in the case of Margaret Thatcher).

ChocChocPorridge Wed 14-Dec-16 13:37:57

I agree about Bridget Jones and Beyonce - I'm just not sure Beyonce has been the driving force behind all those changes listed, I'm sure that there are other female singers (Madonna for instance) that have made a similar global impact.

I saw that movie about the machinists strike the other day - it was very good, why was I never taught about this stuff in history or (ahem.. general studies.. given it wasn't much before my time)?

quencher Wed 14-Dec-16 16:01:02

I did questioned Bridget Jones when I'm first saw her name on the list. But in context it does make sense. I don't think it's in the same way you would look at James Bond or Wonder Woman. Parts of me believe that Helen fielding should have been on the list but in more ways than one, it's Renee that brings the character to life by making it more relatable.

With Beyoncé being on the list, I think if it was based on record and album sales, Rihanna, Madonna, Taylor swift, lady gaga and Katy Perry would be on the list above her. However, she has shown growth over the years and broken boundaries in areas where it concerns acceptability of black women. Her feminism might not be what some feminist agree with but she has used it to her advantage. If it does influence in a good or bad way that's a debate in itself. But if the question is, has she got influence, the answer would be yes.

What is shocking is there is only one real life person from the naughties or right before the naughties to make the list.

Foldedtshirt Wed 14-Dec-16 16:05:23

I like the list as a whole and I even like every woman on it. Beyoncé is the brave choice but I'm a big fan- for young girls she really embodies a strong work ethic and a strong rather than available body- 2 powerful messages for girls to hear.

deydododatdodontdeydo Wed 14-Dec-16 16:15:20

Bridget Jones seems silly. Would have like to have seen a sports star such as Serena Williams, or scientist or business woman.

Foldedtshirt Wed 14-Dec-16 16:35:52

Bridget Jones is silly, but she's there because the diaries and films validated a practically universal experience of life as a woman in the second half of the c20. Wanting to succeed at work, wanting a partner, struggling with weight and appearance, still wanting exasperating parents' approval being a good friend, being a good hostess etc.

quencher Wed 14-Dec-16 16:50:34

I think with Serena Williams she has done very well in her sport but we haven't had lots of women joining tennis in her name in the uk. She was still being over looked by endorsers who preferred M Sharapova pre-scandal. People like Kelly homes have hard more of an impact for getting people into sports in the uk.

Dey the list is about the impact they have had rather than what is aspirational or want to see. I think that is why the queen didn't make the list because she has power but lacks influence in people's everyday lives.
I don't think Beyoncé would have made that list without her impact in 2016.

TheHouseOfIllRepute Wed 14-Dec-16 16:53:09

But it's cis exclusivewink

OlennasWimple Wed 14-Dec-16 17:01:51

Isn't it too soon to tell if Beyonce should be included? I would argue that Madonna has been influential over a number of decades

Bridget Jones is silly...

Is Judy Blume on the list?

Foldedtshirt Wed 14-Dec-16 17:05:43

Yeah at cisclusive 🙌🏻
I like Madonna but I don't think she's a Feminist or good role model.

marilynmonroe Wed 14-Dec-16 17:10:17

It's ridiculous to have Bridget jones on there. Helen fielding maybe since she invented the character. It's like bono being woman of the year. Surely there are lots of women who could have been included. There's not exactly a shortage. I'm not sure about Beyoncé either. Not really sure what's she's done apart from sing songs. Madonna would have been better or bjork?

ChocChocPorridge Wed 14-Dec-16 18:53:27

I would argue that Madonna has been influential over a number of decades

Exactly. They're not on the list because they are a good influence necessarily, but I'd still argue that Madonna has had more influence over her long career personally. Beyonce hasn't been around for long enough I think, and I'm still not sure that she has had more influence on work ethic, and certainly not a 'strong but not available body'.. Any number of female singers and athletes demonstrate that, but it's not a vibe I get from Beyonce's costumes!

quencher Wed 14-Dec-16 19:20:51

Choc in the entertainment industry beyonce's is known for her work ethic. You don't get to her level of performance by doing nothing or being mediocre. Costumes are nothing without the body of work. I doubt she is in the list for costumes and standing around half naked.

I can't actually argue for Madonna or Bjork. I know their music but I lack the understanding of how things were then how they did things differently to change the way the world looks at women and music. I can easily argue a case for beyonce though.

So those who mention the two I pointed out, can you post why they deserve to be on list? With specifics please!

xarpax Wed 14-Dec-16 19:23:17

I think it's a great list. I'm pleased that germaine greer is there smile

quencher Wed 14-Dec-16 19:45:52

Xarpax I don't think you can make a list like that without including her when living in the uk.

Am happy Helen brook is on the list. The services brook offer young people is priceless. I used them a lot of when I was younger and all the girls from my school trusted them. Brook Euston London is great. I probably still have their card in my old wallet somewhere in the house.

Foldedtshirt Wed 14-Dec-16 19:57:33

Ref Beyoncés costumes, I think they show off her strength and athleticism rather than her availability. Ditto the dancing. And her songs are often angry too rather than pleading.
Ref Bridget Jones she embodied everywoman in a rapidly changing world. Whereas heroes and everyman were traditionally just that- men; the character was insanely popular and high profile a woman experiencing everywoman problems.

MikeUniformMike Wed 14-Dec-16 20:00:28

I think Barbie should have been on it.

HermioneWeasley Wed 14-Dec-16 20:09:58

Bridget Jones is fucking ridiculous. Out of a list of 70 they could t find an actual real woman, living or dead, who is more deserving, what utter bollocks.

Agree that Beyoncé is a strange choice over Madonna.

Is Hilary Clinton on it? Malala (technically a girl I guess). Diane Fossey? Tina Fey?

xarpax Wed 14-Dec-16 20:14:12

I like the inclusion of Bridget Jones. She's very un trans friendly smile

Foldedtshirt Wed 14-Dec-16 21:30:47

What would be your reasoning behind Madonna? I like her, but I don't think she's been particularly empowered or empowering for women.

LassWiTheDelicateAir Wed 14-Dec-16 21:34:29

Beyonce is an absurd choice.

Prawnofthepatriarchy Thu 15-Dec-16 08:54:04

Very glad to see Germaine Greer. Especially in the light of the Woman's Hour interview with the TRA who bitched about women's dirty leg hair. Bit of a message being sent, methinks.

xarpax Thu 15-Dec-16 09:05:21

Yes. It seems important that germaine greer is there in light of what is happening with all the no platforming bollocks

Prawnofthepatriarchy Thu 15-Dec-16 09:47:07

No-platforming Germaine Greer exposes just how regressive trans ideology is.

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