What You Need To Know: International Women’s Day

International Women's Day 2019: Google doodle quotes trailblazers

International Women's Day began March 19, 1911, and was observed by more than a million people in Austria, Denmark, Germany and Switzerland.

Now, March 8 is celebrated around the world as International Women’s Day. It is even a national holiday in Afghanistan, Cuba, Vietnam, Uganda, Mongolia, Georgia, Laos, Cambodia, Armenia, Belarus, Montenegro, Russia, Ukraine and other countries.

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In honor of the day, Google’s homepage features an interactive slideshow “told by and made by women.” The slideshow features inspirational quotes from 13 international female trailblazers. The quotes, which are presented in a variety of languages, were illustrated by female artists from around the world.

“The process of choosing the thirteen quotes was extremely difficult, but we aimed to include a diverse representation of voices on a day which celebrates the past, present, and future community of diverse women around the world,” Google officials said.

“I used the sky as inspiration for this piece, as Yoko Ono references it in many of her works. Red is used to accent ‘dream’ and ‘reality’ to represent the sun shining brightly down on us,” said Hazuki Tamano, the Japanese graphic artist who illustrated a quote from Yoko Ono.

Sabeena Karnik, a typographer and illustrator based in Mumbai, India, illustrated Beno Zephine’s quote: “We are too precious to let disappointments enter our minds.”

“This quote for me is so inspiring and uplifting. These are words by Beno Zephine, India's first visually challenged woman in the Indian foreign service. This line can push and motivate anyone to achieve their dreams just as she never stopped pursuing hers,” Karnik told Google.

American illustrator Melissa Crowton created the multilingual opening and closing images of the doodle.

“Although it is often hard to communicate so much in one image, I was inspired by the diversity of the women of the world and wanted my image to reflect that. Each element is unique in shape, texture and size, which I found to be an apt representation of the beauty of our community,” Crowton said.

The doodle features quotes from (in alphabetical order): 

  • Chimamanda Adichie, a Nigerian writer 
  • Millicent Fawcett, a British writer and suffragette 
  • Zaha Hadid, a British-Iraqi architect 
  • Emma Herwegh, a German writer 
  • Mae Jemison, an American astronaut and physician 
  • Frida Kahlo, a Mexican artist 
  • Mary Kom, an Indian boxer 
  • Clarice Lispector, a Brazilian novelist 
  • Yoko Ono, a Japanese multimedia artist 
  • George Sand (Amantine Lucile Aurore Dupin), a French novelist 
  • Sanmao, a Chinese-born Taiwanese writer 
  • Marina Tsvetaeva, a Russian poet 
  • Beno Zephine, an Indian diplomat

The search engine’s doodle tradition began in 1998, when according to the company itself, founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin played around with the corporate logo “to indicate their attendance at the Burning Man festival in the Nevada desert.”

Now, there is an entire team of illustrators bringing biographies, history and interesting tidbits to life on Google’s homepage.

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