Doodle-Worthy Women of March 2014

This month, we’ll look at 4 remarkable, Doodle-Worthy women from around the world:


— Born March 1, 1781, Javiera Carrera was a leader, along with others in her family, in Chile’s independence movement. Carrera was from a very prominent, wealthy family and leveraged that social status to lend support to the movement. After a period of exile, Carrera was able to return to her home country in 1824. Today she is often called the “Mother of Chile,” and is credited with being the creator of the country’s first national flag.

Javiera Carrera

Javiera Carrera.

— Born March 3, 1913, Margaret Bonds is known for her compositions and performances as a pianist, but also for her arts advocacy and community organizing work. She was among the first black composers to rise to prominence in the United States. Bonds was also a prodigy, composing her first piece when she was only 5 years old. She pursued higher education and a graduate degree in music, studied at Juilliard, opened her own arts academy, and performed widely in clubs, theaters, concert halls, and orchestras alike. Later in her career, she wrote songs for popular singers and continued to compose long-form works for the theater and musical theater, including two ballets. Bonds frequently collaborated with Langston Hughes, who added words to her music for long-form plays and performances.

Margaret Bonds, photographed in 1956 by Carl Van Vechten.

Margaret Bonds, photographed in 1956 by Carl Van Vechten.

— Born March 3, 1917, Sameera Moussa was both a nuclear scientist and an advocate for the peaceful application of that science to medicine. She studied radiology and atomic radiation, at Cairo University, eventually joining the faculty there first as a lecturer and then as a professor. Moussa eventually spearheaded the “Atoms for Peace” campaign and organized international conferences around this purpose. Moussa was interested both in applying nuclear science to improve people’s lives and in pursuing regulations and practices that would protect people from such hazards as nuclear bombs. Her mother had battled cancer when Sameera was young, which inspired her to focus on the applications of nuclear science to medicine. She died tragically, and under suspicious circumstances, in the United States at only 35 years old.

Sameera Moussa, date unknown.

Sameera Moussa, date unknown.

— Born March 30, 1955, Marilou Díaz-Abaya was a film and television director and founder of a media and arts school in the Philippines. She studied film internationally before returning to her home country. There, her work in both film and television served as political criticism and as an exploration of social difficulties and conditions in the Philippines. As an educator and founder of a film school, Díaz-Abaya focused on promoting the arts but also on building this social consciousness in a new generation of creators. Díaz-Abaya is the winner of the Fukuoka Asian Culture Arts and Culture Prize, and her films have taken honors in the Metro Manila Film Festival, the British Film Institute Awards, and the Network of Pan Asian Cinema Awards.

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