I came across this interesting New York Times feature titled “Overlooked”, and it lists a number of women throughout our history who have in many ways been forgotten, overlooked or their achievements and life have not really been put on the public radar. 2 of these women on this list are Asian women and dare I say they are pretty bad ass! So here they are via New York Times:

Qiu Jin – A feminist poet and revolutionary who became, a martyr known as China’s ‘Joan of Arc.’ (1875 – 1907)

With her passion for wine, swords and bomb making, Qiu Jin was unlike most women born in late 19th-century China. As a girl, she wrote poetry and studied Chinese martial heroines like Hua Mulan (yes, that Mulan) fantasizing about one day seeing her own name in the history books.

But her ambitions ran up against China’s deeply rooted patriarchal society, which held that a woman’s place remained in the home. Undeterred, Qiu rose to become an early and fierce advocate for the liberation of Chinese women, defying prevailing Confucian gender and class norms by unbinding her feet, cross-dressing and leaving her young family to pursue an education abroad.

Her legacy as one of China’s pioneering feminists and revolutionaries was cemented on July 15, 1907, when she was beheaded at 31 by imperial army forces who charged her with conspiring to overthrow the Manchu-led Qing government. It was her final act of resistance, and it would later earn her a place in the pantheon of China’s revolutionary martyrs.

To this day, she is often referred to as “China’s Joan of Arc.”

Madhubala – A Bollywood legend whose tragic life mirrored Marilyn Monroe’s. (1933-1969)

It was probably the first ghost story in Indian cinema. A bewildered young man in a mansion chasing glimpses of an ethereal, veiled beauty. The movie, “Mahal,” was a huge success, making the lead actress, Madhubala, who was barely 16, a superstar overnight.

Nearly seven decades later, strains of the film’s signature song, “Aayega aane wala” (He will come), are instantly recognizable to most Indians, evoking the suspenseful tale of lost love and reincarnation.

Madhubala’s tragic turn in the film as an enigmatic young woman in search of love seemed to foreshadow her own glittering but short life. She died 20 years later as an icon of beauty and tragedy — her dazzling career, unhappy love life and fatal illness more dramatic than any movie she starred in.

Asked once to describe herself, Madhubala said she was so young when she entered the “maze” of the film industry — she made her debut at 9 — that she had lost herself.

“When you have forgotten yourself, what can you tell people about yourself?” she once said.

My 2 cents worth? Well not much except to say – SERIOUSLY BAD ASS!

Images via New York Times

To read the original article, please click on: Overlooked