Three women from Africa and the Middle East have been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for 2011. Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf (pictured), peace activist Leymah Gbowee, and democracy activist Tawakul Karman of Yemen have all been honored for their commitment to nonviolence. The majority of individuals to win the Nobel Peace Prize in the past 110 years have been men; the last time a woman won was seven years ago. Congratulations, ladies! It’s a proud day to be a woman. [New York Times]
If you missed The New York Times Magazine‘s excellent “Saving the World’s Women” edition focusing on the issues facing women in the developing world, don’t fret! You can still read it online. I enjoyed the piece on how women’s rights are the cause of our time, the interview with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, and the piece about Afghan schoolgirls.
The piece in “Saving The World’s Women” that really stuck out, however, is the interview with the female president of Liberia, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf. The 67-year-old is Africa’s first woman elected to office and a lifelong activist who has been imprisoned and charged with treason for fighting against Liberia’s past oppressive government. When Liberians elected President Sirleaf to their highest office, the event was, as the Times put it, “a kind of feminist fantasy come true.”
But President Sirleaf’s interview dealt with another issue which I happen to think is a total fantasy—the notion that if women ran the world, we wouldn’t have any wars anymore. Keep reading »