10 women who changed history to celebrate the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women


Women have revolutionised the world, whether they have been noticed or not. Strength, tenacity, intelligence and plenty of talent are abilities that, over time, have led women to win many battles to reach their goals.

November 25th is the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women: let’s prepare for this event by remembering 10 female personalities who changed the course of history in a variety of areas.

#1 Simone de Beauvoir

This French philosopher did not like being labelled a feminist, but she can certainly be considered a forerunner to feminism – as well as being a fundamental figure in the struggles and demonstrations of the movement. With her essays and her provocative articles in the magazines of the time, Simone De Beauvoir drew attention to the role of women in twentieth-century society claiming freedom and independence for the female sex in all areas, and an end to discrimination in comparison to men.

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What could be more appropriate than to dedicate our Composable Link featuring the Excellence pendant to Marie Curie? It stands for those who reach great heights through sheer force of will.

#2 Marie Curie

The first woman to teach at the prestigious Sorbonne University in Paris, Marie Curie was a fundamental figure in the fields of physics and chemistry, concentrating in particular on radioactive substances. Her studies led her to discover new radioactive elements – polonium and radium – but at the price of her life, leading to her death in 1934. She had many exceptional victories, such as two Nobel Prizes, which she won for her research in two different fields: in 1903 she won the award for physics, while in 1911 she received the award for chemistry.

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#3 Patti Smith

Let’s turn to a completely different world: the world of rock music, celebrating Patti Smith, who has inspired generations and generations of young people and musicians all over the world, with her words. She joined the movement that was, at the time, known as proto-punk, uniting punchy sounds with profound lyrics: hers was a revolutionary approach, even for the rock music of the seventies, which gained her nicknames such as the ‘Poetess of Punk’ or the ‘High Priestess of Rock’.

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#4 Rosa Parks

An American civil rights activist, Rosa Parks dedicated her life to the struggle against racial discrimination. During the 1950s, she was the protagonist of a small act that gave life to a whole series of popular demonstrations by the Afro-American community in the city of Montgomery: the renowned city bus boycott, an action that was led by Martin Luther King.

The demonstration arose following Rosa Parks’ refusal to give up her seat on the bus to a white passenger, a gesture that saw her taken to prison in 1955. The following year, her case was brought to the Supreme Court of the United States, which decreed that segregation on public transport in Alabama was unconstitutional.

The activist became a true icon of the civil rights movement: she was a strong woman with a pure heart, and to her we dedicate our precious Link with a multi-faceted red stone, as a symbol of passion.

#5 Coco Chanel

Everybody knows the house of Chanel, which remains a renowned haute couture company even today. Behind the foundation of this French fashion house was a young 26 year-old who, was ready to revolutionise the concepts of femininity and fashion: Coco Chanel, who, in 1909, embarked upon her journey. Her greatest successes, and the coronation of the young Coco, took place during the 1920s, after the First World War.

It was during this period that the designer launched what would become the trademark of her creations – the garçonne style: tailoring, suits and hairstyles inspired by what had, until then, exclusively been part of the masculine universe, reworked with a touch of femininity. This was a true renaissance, which influenced fashion for years to come.

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#6 Rita Levi-Montalcini

A neurologist and academic, Rita Levi-Montalcini became renowned for her discovery of nerve growth factor. Thanks to this discovery, she was awarded the Nobel Prize for medicine in 1986. Among her other recognitions, we can’t forget that she was also the first woman to be admitted to the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, as well as being nominated as a Senator for Life for her activities in the scientific and social fields.

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#7 Mother Teresa of Calcutta

A life spent in poverty, entirely dedicated to charity. Mother Teresa of Calcutta is recognized as one of the strongest women in history, who possessed plenty of passion and faith to care for those in need. Her charitable actions and the help she offered to the poor people of the city of Calcutta led to her winning the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979. n 2003 she was canonised.

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#8 Joan of Arc

Today a symbol freedom and justice, Joan of Arc is among the most important women in French history. During the Hundred Years War, with her shrewdness, she managed to convince Prince Charles of Valois that she had been named by God as the person who should lead France to victory over the English, persuading him to entrust her with the task of leading the French armies into battle. Thanks to this act, she managed to conquer certain lands that had fallen into the hands of the English.

Unfortunately, however, her life afterwards was not a happy one: at 19 years of age she was captured and declared a heretic, for which she was burned at the stake. Her memory continues to be celebrated in popular culture, and she has become a true national heroine in France.

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#9 Malala Yousafzai

Extremely young, yet strong: Malala Yousafzai fights for education for women – to which the women of her city of origin, in Pakistan, have no access, due to an edict of the Taliban. At 17 years of age, her passionate struggle won her the Nobel Peace Prize, and she became the youngest winner of this respected recognition.

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#10 Valentina Tereškova

On June 6th 1963, Valentina Tereškova embarked upon her journey into space: as the first woman to become an astronaut, this date marked an important milestone for all women.

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Ten extraordinary women, just like you. On November 25th we celebrate the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women. At Nomination, we are taking part in the “Dragonfly Project”, alongside many other companies, to promote a culture of respect and equality – factors that are fundamental in combating violence against women. You, too, can support our cause by purchasing the Composable Bracelet with the red dragonfly: because a little contribution from each of us can, little by little, change the world.