Ahead of the new year, the BBC has unveiled its list of 100 inspiring and influential women from around the world for this year. Writer Elif Şafak from Turkey is also on the “BBC 100 Women 2021” list.
As noted by the BBC in revealing the list, this year’s list has highlighted the ones “who are hitting the ‘reset'” button, namely the women playing their part to reinvent the society, the culture and the world.
Among these women are also Malala Yousafzai, the youngest ever Nobel Peace Prize laureate, Samoa’s first woman prime minister Fiamē Naomi Mata’afa, Professor Heidi J Larson, who heads the Vaccine Confidence Project, and author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie.
As underlined by the BBC, women from Afghanistan, which has witnessed the resurgence of Taliban, make up half of this year’s list. Some women appear under pseudonyms and without photos for their safety.
Referring to the violations of rights faced by women in Afghanistan since August 2021, namely the resurgence of Taliban in the country, the BBC has underlined that “this year’s list recognizes the scope of their bravery and their achievements as they are forced to reset their lives.”
As for Turkey, Elif Şafak has been the third woman from Turkey listed among the “BBC 100 Women”. Prof. Zehra Sayers was the first woman in that regard; she was listed among the “BBC 100 Women 2019”. Then, last year, Gülsüm Kav, the General Coordinator of We Will Stop Femicides Platform, was listed by the BBC among the “BBC 100 Women 2020”.
About Elif Şafak
The BBC has introduced writer Elif Şafak in following words:
“Award-winning Turkish-British author and advocate for women’s and LGBTQ+ rights.
“Elif Şafak has published 19 books, including 10 Minutes 38 Seconds in This Strange World, shortlisted for the Booker Prize, and The Forty Rules of Love, chosen as one of the BBC’s 100 Novels that Shaped Our World. Her work has been translated into more than 50 languages.
“Şafak has a PhD in political science and has taught in universities in Turkey, the United States (US) and the United Kingdom (UK). In 2021, she was awarded the Halldór Laxness International Literary Prize for her contribution to ‘the renewal of the art of storytelling’.”
About ‘BBC 100 Women’
BBC 100 Women names 100 influential and inspirational women around the world every year. It creates documentaries, features and interviews about their lives – stories that put women at the centre.
The BBC’s 100 Women team drew up a shortlist based on names gathered by them and suggested by the BBC’s network of World Service languages teams. The pool of names was then assessed against this year’s theme – women who are hitting “reset”, playing their part to reinvent the world after the global pandemic has forced so many to reassess the way they live.
It was also measured for regional representation and due impartiality, before the final names were chosen.