Cult Column

You could say that 2014 was the year of female empowerment. It was the year that Malala Yousafzai won the Nobel peace prize, the year that Angelina Jolie launched a campaign to make rape a war crime, and the year that the UN collaborated with actress-turned-Goodwill Ambassador Emma Watson to launch their HeForShe campaign advocating gender equality. All this and more was the focus of International Women’s Day 2015, a day dedicated to celebrating and applauding women’s success.

Hashtags like #bringbackourgirls and #yesallwomen were trending globally, proving how criticisms of incidents like the kidnap of 276 school girls from Nigeria can push these inequalities to the headlines of big media corporations. This commitment to, and celebration of improvements in gender equality is not scheduled to slow down anytime soon. Post International Women’s Day, it’s time to set our sights on the women who are ready to bring strong women to 2015.

This year, Academy Award winners Jennifer Lawrence and Sandra Bullock are both set to star in biopics of trailblazing businesswomen. Jennifer Lawrence is currently filming Joy, playing the groundbreaking Joy Mangano who invented the self-wringing mop, while Sandra Bullock will play the pioneering Tupperware promoter Brownie Wise in a film based on Bob Kealing’s novel, Tupperware Unsealed. Both businesswomen reached the top of their professions through hard work, prodigious talent and charisma. Wise was a marketing genius who inspired housewives to earn their own income through Tupperware gatherings. She set up parties for housewives and mothers in post-war America, teaching them how to use the containers and sales soon took off.

Throughout the following decade, hundreds of women became Tupperware hostesses and the success of the company pushed its sales to an estimated $100m. Joy Mangano was another important businesswomen of the 20th century, establishing her career by developing a self-wringing mop and a multitude of other inventions and appliances designed to reduce the labour and time housewives dedicated to their homes. Hopefully, the pairing of these inspiring stories with two of the most respected actresses in Hollywood will poignantly bring to the screen the struggles of women in a male dominated world and the overturning of social convention by women who sought a better life. Will they succeed? Ready, set, go. Lets see what these women can  do.

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