Zelda Fitzgerald was the original flapper and one of the most admired women of the 1920’s. Get her book by clicking on the photo above: http://amzn.to/1MSAEOX
At the beginning of the 20th century, few women worked outside the home. If they did, they were usually nannies, teacher, maids or engaged in similar occupations that involved the care of children or homes. Most of them had no idea how much their lives and the lives of their daughters and granddaughters were about to change.
By the end of the 20th century, there were women who held positions as Congresswomen, Senators, governors, city mayors, executives, reporters, talk show hosts, movie stars, doctors, and dentists. Women who had even been elected to the highest positions in their countries, including in Great Britain and India, although not in the United States.
These new career opportunities also gave women financial freedom. For the first time, they could choose whether or not they wanted to get married and whether or not they wanted to continue to work after they were married. In fact, marriage was no longer the only way a woman could achieve financial security and have respect and status.
At the same time, careers and financial security were not the only changes during this pivotal century. Women cut their hair, wore short skirts and pants, and had more freedom than their ancesters had ever known. Birth control gave women power to decide whether or not they would have children. Better healthcare increased the lifespan of both men and women … but particularly women.
These events did not occur in a vacuum. Often they happened because of women who worked tirelessly to force change. Sometimes, women like the infamous Zelda Fitzgerald did not try to change the world. They simply lived lives that inspired others to want to copy them.
Zelda’s biography, shown above, is an unforgettable tale of her flamboyant life as the wife of famous author F. Scott Fitzgerald.
As someone who loves to read biographies, this article contains links to my six favorite books about women who lived during the 20th Century. These biographies are interesting an well-written. The women whose story they tell are all fascinating, for a variety of reasons.
This is your opportunity to learn more about some of these amazing women from the 20th Century. Some of them were famous politicians. Other women lead interesting lives for other reasons. Some of them were inspiring; others tragic. Read one of the biographies featured in this article and let me know what you thought of it in the comments section at the bottom of this article. Feel free to let our readers know which books you loved and which ones you think fell short of your expectations.
Women in Politics
There were so many interesting women in politics during the 20th Century. In addition to the ones featured here, readers may also want to read about Sarah Palin, Hillary Clinton or Eleanor Roosevelt, from the U.S., as well as the fascinating women who have been influential in other countries. Check out all the wonderful biographies of 20th Century women from Amazon.
Although all six of the women who are featured in this article were very different in nationalities and political beliefs, they all had an impact on the ordinary women who were inspired and influenced by them to become interested in politics, too.
The Iron Lady – Margaret Thatcher
Margaret Thatcher was elected to be the Prime Minister of Great Britain and was known as the Iron Lady because of her toughness. Learn more about this book by clicking on the picture above: http://amzn.to/1V8JJnV
While the United States still has not had a woman President or Vice President, Margaret Thatcher rose to be Prime Minister in Great Britain … the highest elected office in that country. Learn about her toughness and how she rose to power.
Margaret Thatcher was nicknamed the Iron Lady because of her impressive toughness. Whether people liked her or not, they did admire her.
Sadly, like Ronald Reagan in our country, by the end of her life she suffered from dementia. This is most unfortunate, because her memories would have been so enlightening. Imagine what we could have learned from this impressive women, including her relationships with the U.S. Presidents and leaders of Europe during her time in office. While this is an interesting authorized biography, it is sad that we will never have the opportunity to read her personal memoirs.
If you want to see the price or learn more about any of the books featured in this article, just click on the picture. You will be taken to its Amazon page where you can read an excerpt, learn more, or shop for other biographies of famous women.
In addition, you will find ads for more biographies of famous women at the bottom of this article.
Indira – The Most Powerful Woman in India
Indira Gandhi was elected to be the Prime Minister of India, in a country were women often have little power. Learn more about her book by clicking on the photo above: http://amzn.to/1EhymFP
Great Britain was not the only country to choose a woman to lead their country. You may also want to read about the inspirational life of Indira Gandhi, the first woman Prime Minister of India. Before her assassination in 1984, she was an important member of the Indian National Congress Party.
Her rise to power was particularly amazing, considering she lived in a country were many women were expected to be submissive to men.
Of course, her life was not without tragedy. Despite her assassination, however, it is still remarkable that she was so successful, especially considering that the United States and many other countries have not yet had had a woman elected to president or prime minister.
If you are like me, you will be impressed by her wisdom, grace, strength and faith, despite the overwhelming odds and the resistance she had to overcome.
Be sure to put this book on your reading list, if you are interested in learning more about strong, impressive women. She is especially interesting because, despite her power, she also remained very lady-like in her demeanor.
The Beloved Evita – First Lady of Argentina
Evita was so beloved in Argentina that a musical and several movies have been made of her life, one starring Madonna. Learn more about her book by clicking on the photo above: http://amzn.to/1MSDLq3
Evita was so well loved by the people of Argentina, that a musical and movie starring Madonna have been made of her amazing life. Older movies were made, as well.
If you think you know about her, based on the musical alone, you will be stunned by how much more there is to know. Was she a good, kind-hearted woman who only wanted to help the people in her country, a sinner with a scandalous background, or both? Read her biography and decide for yourself.
Evita Peron was the beloved First Lady of Argentina. Her life story is another one that is both fascinating and tragic. The musical about her barely touches on the depth of her life experiences … both the bad and the good.
When she died, an entire nation mourned her in a way that has been rare in modern times … especially for women. Her life story is at times shocking and at times inspiring, but it is always fascinating.
In addition to reading this book, I recommend that people rent or purchase the movie “Evita,” starring Madonna. At the time the movie came out, many people discussed the parallels in the lives of Evita and Madonna, as well as what they both had to overcome in order to become two of the most well-known and influential women in their countries, despite their humble beginnings. The movie is based on the Broadway musical by the same name, and it is an excellent adaptation.
Marilyn Monroe: One of the Most Influential Movie Stars
Fans loved Marilyn Monroe and so did President John. F. Kennedy. Go to the Amazon page for this book by clicking on the picture of it above: http://amzn.to/1V8NidU
The 20th Century, with the invention of movies, allowed everyone to see famous celebrities … if not in person, at least on the big screen. These women influenced the way we dressed, our behavior and how many women lived their lives.
Marilyn Monroe was probably the the most famous movie star of the mid-20th Century. Her tragic life, including her affair with President Kennedy and her marriages to playwright Arthur Miller and baseball player Joe DiMaggio, is shared in this book.
Anyone who grew up in the 1950’s and 1960’s and remembers Marilyn Monroe will enjoy reading this book. It not only tells the story of her life, but is also a reflection of the pain behind the scenes that permeated much of life during the “Camelot” era.
From her painful teenage years as Norma Jean, to her rise in Hollywood and her painful insecurity and personal demons, this is the story of what was going on behind the scenes in Marilyn Monroe’s life.
Don’t forget: If you want to see the price or learn more about any of the books featured in this article, just click on the picture of that book. You will be taken to its Amazon page where you can read an excerpt, learn more, or shop for other biographies of famous women.
In addition, you will find more interesting biographies at the end of this article.
A Television Star Who Made Us Laugh
Everyone Loved Lucy, or so it seemed in the mid 20th Century! Go to the Amazon page for this book by clicking on the picture above: http://amzn.to/1Kjcdbw
Not all the women who affected us went into politics, married a politician or became a movie star. Some of them inspired us by their work in television, a medium that didn’t even exist until the middle of the 20th Century.
Lucille Ball made us laugh and helped us understand friendship and marriage in a new light. She was the first major actress to show us how to laugh at our foibles, and the entire world seemed to “Love Lucy.”
Deep inside of us, we all could identify with the situations that made Lucille Ball the queen of comedy in the 20th Century.
“I Love Lucy” was one of the longest running, most beloved television shows … and is still a favorite of many fans. While some people at the time thought that the marriage of Lucy and Ricky Ricardo was “reality TV,” in truth their behind-the-scenes marriage was anything but comical. Learn about the real life Lucy and how she raised her family despite her show business career.
There Were So Many Extraordinary Women in the 20th Century – Here are More That May Interest You!
There were so many influential and extraordinary women in politics, art, religion, business and other fields during the 20th Century.
In fact, during that period of time, very few people were “famous just for being famous,” although you might say that this was the only reason Zelda Fitzgerald was famous. Most of the women who became well-known, however, actually had to achieve something commendable.
Hopefully, this list will encourage you to learn more about some of the most inspiring women in the 20th Century.
Deborah-Diane is a Southern California writer with four adult children and seven grandchildren. She enjoys finding fun and interesting products for all of the members of her family and sharing her discoveries with her readers. She has a BS degree in Human Environment Design and loves to horseback ride, walk on the beach, practice yoga, read books and spend time with her family.