Here is a list of 20 persons (14 women, 4 African-Americans, 2 Asians)
that I hope will fit your needs.
- Women -
Hannah Arendt (1906-1975)
German-born historian and political philosopher who in 1940 emigrated
to the USA to become internationally recognized as the best-known
American political theorist of her generation, famous for her subtle
analysis of totalitarism.
Mary Astell (1668-1731)
One of the earliest feminists, author great feminist works and
correspondent of various important natural philosophers of her time.
Hildegard of Bingen (1098-1179)
Visionary, poet, composer, naturalist, healer, and theologian -
founded convents; corresponded with secular and ecclesiastical
leaders;even more remarkable for a woman of her time was the body of
written work she produced with a range - from natural history and
medicine to cosmology, music, poetry, and theology - that surpasses
that of most other male contemporaries; it also possesses great beauty
and witnesses to Hildegard's intellectual power.
Eleanor Roosevelt (1884-1962)
She was the wife of United States President Franklin D. Roosevelt,
social activist, author, lecturer, and United States representative to
the United Nations; worked to promote racial equality.
Elisabeth Charlotte, Princess of Palatine (1652-1722)
Married to the younger brother of French "Sun King" Louis XIV,
intelligent and sharp-witted Elisabeth Charlotte did not only see
through the orotund false front of the French court and wrote about it
in remarkable letters, she also corresponded with some of the most
famous scientists and philosophers in a time when women were widely
regarded intellectually inferior.
Maria Sibylla Merian (1647-1717)
Extraordinary natural historian zoologist, biologist, and artist who
broke away the gender borders of her time by learning professions that
were male domains in her time; she travelled South America and left an
outstanding and extensive documentation of the tropical biota.
Pearl S. Buck (1892-1973)
Author of novels, collections of stories, biography and autobiography,
poetry, drama, children's literature, and translations from the
Chinese who received awards such as the Nobel Prize and the Pulitzer
Prize; active in American civil rights and women's rights activities,
cultural exchange and understanding between Asia and the West, and
promoter of inter-racial adoption.
Käthe Kollwitz (1867-1945)
One of the greatest graphic artists of all time, Kollwitz, the
granddaughter of a radical preacher and the daughter of a union
organizer, a pacifist, a lover of children, and a socialist; strongly
voiced her opposition to war, brutality, hunger, exploitation and
discrimination, and dedication to human dignity and brotherhood
through her works of art.
Marie Sklodowska-Curie (1867-1934)
Through her intelligence and perseverance, physicist Marie
Sklodowska-Curie became one of the first women in modern science to
gain respect in her male-dominated fields of work; she performed
pioneering studies with radium and polonium and contributed profoundly
to the understanding of radioactivity. even was the first person ever
to receive two Nobel Prizes.
Coco Chanel (1883-1971)
By the innovative power of her unconventional designs, fashion
designer Coco Chanel did not only change the world of fashion but,
what is more, also the self-conception of women, and not only of those
who could afford her original clothes.
Clara Barton (1821-1912)
A promoter of free school education and later, during the American
Civil War, a protagonist for better medical supply and care for wonded
soldiers; after the war she worked with the suffragist movement and
became founder of the American Red Cross.
Harriet Beecher Stowe (1811-1896)
Novellist who wrote among other books "Uncle Tom's Cabin" (1852), an
immensely successful anti-slavery novel that like no other work of
literature or publictaion shaped public sentiment in the pre-Civil War
Elizabeth I. (1533-1603)
Queen of England since 1558, the daughter of Henry VIII was one of the
strongest female personalities of history who ruled her country
extraordinary successful in a male-dominated world; she was a highly
intelligent master of political science and transformed England from
an unimportant second-rate nation into one of the leading players in
Harriet Tubman (1819/20-1913)
Born into slavery, African-American Harriet Tubman escaped to the
North in 1850 together with her husband and played an important and
dangerous role in the movement that helped slaves from the south
escape to Canada, the so-called "Underground Railroad", and later made
her hometown Auburn, NY a center of activity in support of women's
- African-Americans -
Frederick Douglass (1818-1895)
Born a slave in Maryland, Frederick Douglass escaped to become one of
the leading and most influential Abolitionists, deeply convinced of
the principles and ideas of individual freedom.
Martin Luther King (1929-1968)
United States charismatic civil rights leader and Baptist minister who
campaigned against the segregation of Blacks; fell victim to an
Jesse Owens (1913-1980)
With his triumphs at the 1936 Olympic Games in Berlin, Jesse Owens did
not only contribute much to the recognition of black athlets; he also
proved the official ideology of the National Socialists about "Aryan
Superiority" wrong when he defeated German athlets.
Benjamin Banneker (1731-1806)
Mathematician, astronomer, and surveyor, Benjamin Banneker has been
called the first African American intellectual and the author of what
is believed to be the first scientific book published by an African
- Asians -
Mohandas K. Gandhi (1869-1948)
Political and social leader who developed the principle of passive
resistance against injustice, took lead in the long struggle for
Indian independence from Britain and promoted nonviolent protest and
Rabindranath Tagore (1861-1941)
Nobel laureate for literature (1913), was one of modern India's
greatest poets and the composer of independent India's national
anthem; maybe the first author to arouse the world's interest in
contemporary Indian culture.
Hope this is what you need.
Very best regards,