September 21

Women peacemakers born today

  • 1864 Elena Vacarescu born Bucharest (d. 1947). Romanian poet, author, and folklorist. First and only woman ambassador to League of Nations, 1925-26 (interim 1922-24, 1926-39); delegate to two peace conferences 1919, 1945. Co-founded International Institute of Intellectual Cooperation (a predecessor to UNESCO) to promote intellectual cooperation, human rights, disarmament, collective security, and peaceful settlement, 1924. Two-time laureate of French Academy.

  • 1916 Francoise Giroud born Lausanne, Switzerland (d. 2003). French feminist writer; journalist and politician; arrested and imprisoned for resistance to Germans, 1943-44. Founded weekly L'Express, opposing colonial wars in Indo-China and Algeria, 1953. First French Minister of Women's Affairs, 1974. Headed Action against Hunger, 1984.

  • 1956 Madeeha Gauhar born Karachi. Pakistani actress and playwright. Dedicated to peace with India; founded social protest theater Ajoka ("Today") which joined in festivals with Indian women, Lahore, 1983. Directed hit play "Bullah" about nonviolent Sufi saint. Twice jailed for women’s rights protests. Nobel Peace Prize nominee, 2005.

Women's peacemaking on this day

  • 1961 Women Strike for Peace began at Dagmar Wilson's home, Georgetown DC.

  • 1988 Global Popular Summit at UN organized by Scandinavian women.

  • 2001 Megan Bartlett founded Ground Zero for Peace promoting peaceful response to 9/11; she was a nurse first-responder to 9/11.

  • 2012 Phwe Yu Mon led protest to end Kachin War, Rangoon.