From Vice President Kamala Harris’ historic inauguration to Britney Spears’ liberation, we look back on a few feminist wins of 2021.
- Vice President Kamala Harris being sworn in
Inauguration Day was a historic moment. As Harris was sworn in as Vice President, she became the first woman, Black woman, and South Asian woman to act in the role and the highest ranking woman in U.S. government history.
- Chloe Zhao’s Oscar win
Chloe Zhao made history as the first woman of color to win Best Director at the Academy Awards with her film Nomadland. Zhao was just the second woman overall to win Best Director, joining Kathryn Bigelow who won in 2009 for The Hurt Locker. Here’s hoping we won’t have to wait 12 more years for another woman director to be recognized for her brilliance.
- The Linda Lindas rocking out
The Linda Lindas went viral for a performance of an original song, entitled “Racist, Sexist Boy,” inspired by an incident experienced by the band’s drummer. The internet rallied around the girls’ talent and creativity. In the midst of all this love, the band was signed to Epitaph Records.
- Zaila Avant-garde winning the Scripps National Spelling Bee
How do you spell “iconic” and does it look a little something like “Zaila Avant-garde”? In July, she made history as the first Black American to win the National Spelling Bee. She won with the word “murraya,” a species of tropical tree. Avant-garde is also a basketball prodigy and holds three Guinness World Records.
- The Norwegian Women’s Handball Team successfully protesting sexist uniforms
The Norwegian Women’s Handball Team went viral over the summer for their protest of the sexist uniform policy. Instead of wearing the bikini bottoms required in the guidelines, they wore spandex shorts and were fined for it. Months later, the Federal Handball Association released a new policy with no bikini bottoms in sight.
- Britney Spears’ finally being free
After nearly 13 years, Britney Spears was finally freed from the conservatorship that had been controlling her entire life. The #FreeBritney Movement spent years raising awareness about the conservatorship. In 2021, with the help of the popular documentary Framing Britney Spears, concerned fans and Britney herself were finally heard. In heartbreaking testimony, Spears’ spoke about her harrowing experience and asked that she finally be allowed to control her own life. In November, it became official: she was no longer under conservatorship.