Five Indomitable Women You Should Know About

Five Indomitable Women You Should Know About

boundaries in the fields of film, fashion and politics, these
pioneering women are visionaries
guiding us to a brighter, bolder future.

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Haifaa Al-Mansour

Saudi Arabian Film Director

In 2012, Haifaa Al-Mansour filmed Wadjda, the first ever feature
to be made entirely in Saudi Arabia. Due to the public segregation
of men and women, Al-Mansour was required to direct the movie’s
outdoor scenes from inside a van, giving instructions to her cast
and crew via walkie-talkie. In doing so she became Saudi Arabia’s
first female filmmaker. As Saudi Arabia lifts its 35-year-long ban
on cinemas – at the request of its 32-year-old crown prince,
Mohammed bin Salman – Al-Mansour seems the most likely candidate to
become an ambassador between Hollywood and Riyadh. Her latest film, Mary
Shelley, based on the life of the Frankenstein author, was released
in 2017 and starred Dakota Fanning; more Al-Mansour US-based
projects are likely to be given the green light in the near

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez


Born in the Parkchester neighbourhood of the Bronx (where she
now lives) Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez made history at this year’s
mid-term elections, becoming the youngest woman ever elected to
Congress. By the time she enters Congress as the Democratic
candidate for New York‘s Fourteenth District,
she will be 29. From a Puerto Rican family, the Democratic
Socialist’s campaign focused on the areas that had impacted her own
clan growing up: education and community organising – from common
concerns to overcoming social injustices. The New York
congresswoman-elect says she “won her seat in the US House of
Representatives because of all the doors she knocked on.” With the
shoes to prove it, the first pair worn by Cortez on the campaign
trail are making fashion history as part of an exhibition at the
Cornell Costume Collection titled “Women Empowered: Fashions from
the Frontline.” The exhibit calls on women to submit items of
clothing that have empowered them in the past.

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Livia Firth

Creative Director of Eco-Age

In 2009, Livia Firth established Eco-Age, a consultancy firm
providing sustainability solutions for
brands looking to improve their supply chain. With a client book
boasting high-profile names like Chopard, Erdem, Stella McCartney
and Gucci, Firth is responsible for great strides in the luxury and
fashion markets. Spotlighting sustainability success stories at the
Green Carpet Challenge (of which she is the founder), the project
aims to raise the profile of sustainability and social welfare by
encouraging celebrities to wear ethical designs at high-profile
events. A UN Leader of Change, Firth has been recognised with the
UN Fashion 4 Development Award and is also a founding member of
Annie Lennox’s The Circle – a powerful women’s advocacy group.

Adwoa Aboah

Model and Founder of Gurls Talk

No longer a runway newcomer, Adwoa has walked in shows for
Chanel, Fendi and Miu Miu and fronted global campaigns for the
likes of Burberry, Versace and Marc Jacobs. Appearing on the cover
of Edward Enninful’s first issue as editor-in-chief of British
Vogue for in December 2017, Aboah represented a shift in focus for
the fashion publication. Modelling accolades aside, it is her
candid and honest account of her battle with addiction and
depression that has made her one of the industry’s most courageous
voices and in-demand personalities. Gurls Talk – a digital project
which gives young women a platform to discuss feminist issues – debunks taboos and
is founded on the basis that by coming together we can “become both
individually and collectively stronger, inspire each other and make
a positive impact on the world.”

Deeyah Khan

Documentary Maker

Born in Norway to immigrant parents of
Pashtun and Punjabi ancestry, Deeyah’s experience of living between
different cultures has helped shape her artistic vision. Providing
a platform to those that are often overlooked and misunderstood,
Deeyah Khan’s work highlights the voices of women of Muslim
heritage. Her 2012 film, Banaz: A Love Story, chronicled the life
and death of Banaz Mahmod, a young British Kurdish woman murdered
by her family in a so-called honour killing. Her second film,
Jihad, involved two years of interviews and filming with Islamic
extremists, convicted terrorists and former jihadis. Deeyah is the
founder of Fuuse, a media and arts company that puts women, people
from minorities and third-culture children at the centre of their
own stories and in 2016 she became the first UNESCO Goodwill
Ambassador for artistic freedom and creativity.

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