Inspiring baby names for International Women's Day
March 8 is International Women's Day. Find a strong, feminist baby name for your daughter — or son! — from this list of 30 women who have shaped the women's rights movement.
International Women's Day celebrates strong women throughout history who have fought for social, economic and political equality for women around the world. It acknowledges the work done by women of the past and points out the inequalities still present in the system, particularly for women of color and those living in poverty. Give your child a leg up on the importance of activism with a baby name that makes a statement, inspired by these female leaders.
Baby names inspired by American suffragettes and abolitionists
- Abigail Scott Duniway: writer, advocate for women's rights
- Clara Chan Lee: first Chinese-American woman voter in the U.S.
- Elizabeth Cady Stanton: social activist, abolitionist, women's rights pioneer
- Ida B. Wells: African-American journalist, civil rights leader, suffragist
- Lucy Stone: orator, women's rights leader, abolitionist; known for keeping her own name after marriage
- Lydia Taft: first woman voter in Colonial America
- Minnie Fisher Cunningham: first executive secretary of the League of Women Voters
- Nina E. Allender: cartoonist who campaigned heavily for women's suffrage
- Sojourner Truth: African-American abolitionist and women's rights activist, intersectional feminism pioneer, born Isabella Baumfree
- Susan B. Anthony: feminist pioneer and social reformer vital to the women's suffrage movement
Baby names inspired by suffragettes from around the world
- Anette Poelman: co-founded the first women's suffrage group in the Netherlands
- Catherine Helen Spence: known as the "Greatest Australian Woman"
- Doria Shafik: prominent leader of the Egyptian women's liberation movement
- Emmeline Pankhurst: British suffragette movement leader
- Eva Perón: former first lady of Argentina
- Fusae Ichikawa: women's suffrage pioneer in Japan
- Louisa Lawson: Australian feminist poet
- Nellie McClung: Canadian feminist, one of "The Famous Five"
- Olympe de Gouges: French activist, feminist and abolitionist
- Sarojini Naidu: Indian activist who became the first woman governor of an Indian state
Baby names inspired by current international women's rights activists
- Chitra Panjabi: intersectional feminist and current vice president of the National Organization for Women
- Dorothy Aken'Ova: founder of the International Center for Reproductive Health and Sexual Rights and executive committee member of the Coalition of African Lesbians in South Africa
- Edriana Noerdin: program director for the Women Research Institute
- Eleanor Smeal: current president of the Feminist Majority Foundation, fighting for women's equality around the world
- Emma Kaliya: chairwoman of FEMNET, The African Women's Development and Communication Network
- Daphne Jayasinghe: co-chairwoman of the Gender & Development Network
- Joanna Manganara: Greek feminist, current president of the International Alliance of Women
- Kathambi Kinoti: co-founder of the Young Women's Leadership Institute in Kenya
- Rosa Lizarde: global director for the Feminist Task Force
- Solome Nakaweesi Kimbugwe: chairwoman of the Forum for Women in Democracy
Feminist names for baby boys
Though we haven't featured any male champions of feminist rights — it is International Women's Day, after all — you can draw inspiration from many of the names above. We name baby girls after men all the time, so why not try the reverse? Start with the surnames: Using last names as first names has been a major trend in baby names over the past 20 years. Try out Stanton or Spence to set your son on the right path to pursuing gender equality.