It’s about time we all started learning about historical landmarks… made by women.
The SPARK movement is a “girl-fueled, intergenerational activist organization working online to ignite an anti-racist gender justice movement.” They were founded in 2010 in response to the Report of the APA Task Force on the Sexualization of Girls, but have expanded to training girls to be activists, organizers, and leaders in the fight for justice. And they’re determined to put women on the map.
Women make up 51% of the population but according to these bummer stats:
- There isn’t a single national holiday named after a woman.
- Not a single woman graces our paper currency.
- Only nine of the 100 statues in National Statuary Hall are of women.
- Less than 25% of the postage stamps issued by our government to commemorate individuals are of women.
- In New York City there are 150 statues of people: 145 are men and 5 are of women.
- The overwhelming majority of schools and streets are named after men.
- Only four women have been selected as TIME magazine’s “Man of the Year” since 1927, and only one of those four was an American woman. TIME changed the title from “Man of the Year” to “Person of the Year” in 1999, but hasn’t selected a woman since the politically correct title change.
- Male guests on the Sunday morning political talk shows outnumber female guests four to one.
- Network news programs feature women as expert commentators in their fields only 13% of the time; male experts are featured 87% of the time.
- Since its inception in 1924, Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade has featured 108 giant character balloons of historical figures and pop icons — only ten of them female. The first female character balloon wasn’t introduced until 1982.
After the non-profit noticed that Google’s daily doodles featured women only 17% of the time, they reached out to the big dogs in tech. Google agreed that this was a problem, and the two have been working together to feature more history-making women.
Google then invited SPARK to actively research and honor notable women through a mapping project powered by their Field Trip app. Now, whenever app users log into Field Trip and switch on the history notifications, they are notified when they are approaching the exact location where a woman made history at some point in time. Users can also read a bit about the badass woman and her achievements.
- The Arpilleristas in Santiago, Chile, a group of women who wove colorful tapestries documenting the turmoil and violence of Pinochet’s regime.
- Mary Ellen Pleasant in San Francisco, CA, an activist and abolitionist who, among other things, would dress like a jockey to help slaves escape their plantations.
- Mary Anning in Lyme, England, a renowned fossilist who discovered fossils of a Plesiosaurus, rocking the scientific community to its core.
So far, the team has researched and mapped more than 100 notable women on the app, and invite others to nominate their favorite historical women to be featured.