A Wonder of Moomins: Tove Jansson

The creator of the Moomins phenomena, without a doubt one of the best Finnish artists of all time and one of the most read. Tove Jansson, born on August 9th, 1914 in Helsinki which was, back then, part of Russia, would grow up to create work of immeasurable value as a writer, artist and cartoonist, …

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The Hawaiian Revolution: Patsy Mink

The first Asian-American woman to run for President, running in 1972 as an anti-war candidate, Patsy Mink gained national attention when she became an ardent civil rights campaigner, speaking passionately at the Democratic National Convention on the right to equality. In her life, she became the first non-white woman and the first Asian-American woman elected …

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The Renascence of the Sonnet: Edna St Vincent Millay

Her career as a poet was a meteoric rise to fame, becoming the first woman to win the Pulitzer prize in poetry. Performance artist, superstar extraordinaire, renowned poet, her words spoken to audiences enraptured by every verse. Many dubbed her the greatest poet since Sappho but a road accident in middle-age left her dependent on …

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The Cosmic Artist: Alma Thomas

Emerging in the ‘60s as the personification of a liberated youth through her exuberant and abstract colours, patterns and shapes that she painted from her observations from the world around her and the world above her head. 60 years ago, Alma Thomas, born on September 22nd, 1891 in Columbus, Georgia, made her name painting her …

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The Comet: Maria Mitchell

America’s first female astronomer, first female astronomy professor and the first American scientist to discover a comet, of any gender, bringing Maria Mitchell, born on August 1st, 1818 in Nantucket, Massachusetts, international acclaim. But there was far more to her story than this. A staunch feminist and passionate advocate for science and mathematics education for …

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La Resistencia: Jovita Idar Vivero

Jovita Idar Vivero quite literally stood up against oppression… as a journalist, activist and suffragist, she often faced down dangerous situations as the situation in America was deteriorating rapidly. She was born on September 7th, 1885 in Laredo, Texas, one of eight children born to Jovita and Nicasio, but this was a time when the …

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The First Black Oscar: Hattie McDaniel

April 18th, 1940. 81-years-ago one of the most influential movies ever made was released… Gone with the Wind. Whilst it may have lasted some four hours, it pulled in 10 Academy Award nominations and was the highest grossing movie ever made. It tells the story of Scarlett O’Hara and follows her romantic pursuit of Ashley …

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The Venus of Manhattan: Audrey Munson

America’s first supermodel and the first non-pornographic nude movie star, Audrey Munson has been immortalised in some of America’s most famous statues, including the second largest statue in New York, not to mention statues at the entrance to the Manhattan Bridge and on the Pulitzer Fountain. Yet as swiftly as she rose to the pinnacle …

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The First Lady of Billiards: Masako Katsura

The first woman to compete for a world’s title in billiards, Masako Katsura, born on March 7th, 1913 in Tokyo, Japan, shattered the boundaries of one of the world’s most popular sports by making a name for herself in billiards, a traditionally male sport, wowing crowds of thousands around the world and making an absolute …

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The Lost Daughter of Hollywood: Anna May Wong

Anna May Wong became a hero of Asia, Hollywood’s first Asian star and a hugely popular celebrity adored by millions across the world as she graced the screen of Hollywood’s Golden Age, but her career was marred by discrimination and hate. Time and time again, this phenomenal actress faced the kind of evil that prevented …

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