LONDON (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Late prime minister Margaret Thatcher, known as the “Iron Lady” for her steely resolve, topped a list of females who have had the biggest impact on women’s lives over the past 70 years, the BBC said on Wednesday.
Thatcher, who died in 2013, was Britain’s first woman prime minister and also the country’s longest-serving leader of the 20th century, governing from 1979 to 1990.
Her legacy included radically transforming the British economy along free-market lines and a role in the peaceful end to the Cold War.
Thatcher, who died in 2013, led the list of seven women compiled by BBC Radio 4 “Woman’s Hour” programme for its 70th birthday, the broadcaster said on its website.
Bridget Jones, the fictional thirtysomething singleton featured in British writer Helen Fielding’s novels as trying to make sense of life and love while bingeing on booze and chocolate, also joined the “Power List”.
The list also included U.S. singer Beyonce, Australian academic Germaine Greer and Helen Brook, who set up the Brook Advisory Centres in 1964 offering contraceptive advice to unmarried women.
Barbara Castle, a Labour lawmaker who brought in equal pay legislation in 1970, and Jayaben Desai, who campaigned against low pay and poor conditions for women workers, were also named on the list.
While Thatcher topped the list, the other women were not ranked in any order.
“The list takes in a range of experiences across a range of ages,” said BBC 5 live presenter Emma Barnett, who chaired the judges’ panel.
“We hope the list inspires, educates and crucially shines a light on the work of some women who history may already be starting to forget.”
Reporting by Astrid Zweynert; Editing by Katie Nguyen. Please credit the Thomson Reuters Foundation, the charitable arm of Thomson Reuters, which covers humanitarian news, women's rights, trafficking, property rights and climate change. Visit news.trust.org to see more stories