“Girl power” was made popular by the pop group Spice Girls in the mid-to-late 1990s. The phrase is typically used as a reference to female empowerment and independence, and has also been linked to modern-day feminism. The “girl power” phrase came in vogue in 1987 in a song by London-based all-girl group Mint Juleps and their “Girl to the Power of 6.” The pop-punk due Shampoo also had a single titled Girl Power in 1995. But, Spice Girls, without a doubt, set the phrase on fire in the mid-to-late 1990s.
At the beginning of the 21st century, a link between “girl power,” Spice Girls, and female action heroes was also made! Roughly in that same time period, Angela Merkel became the first woman Chancellor of Germany in 2005. Merkel has also been the leader of the Christian Democratic Union since 2000. Powerful with longevity, Angela Merkel has been described as the de facto leader of Europe. For example, as recently as December 2015, Merkel was named the Time magazine’s “person of the year", with Time declaring Merkel to be the “Chancellor of the Free World.” She was also named the “most powerful woman in the world” for the 10th time in May 2016 by Forbes.
More recently, Theresa May became Prime Minister of the United Kingdom on July 13, 2016, after David Cameron stepped down as the leader of the Conservative Party following UK’s June 23, 2016 referendum on European Union membership. May is also now the leader of the Conservative Party. She is the second female Prime Minister in UK after Margaret Thatcher – the iron lady – who served from 1979 to 1990. Theresa May is commonly referred to as a one-nation conservative and is characterized as a liberal conservative. She does not have the accolades, experience, or brand that Angela Merkel has, but anyone who is referred to as the next “iron lady” of the United Kingdom is to be reckoned with politically.
That brings us to Hillary Clinton – the former US Secretary of State, former Senator from New York, and former FLOTUS. She is the betting odds favorite to become the first woman President of the United States of America. The election is November 8, 2016, and the inauguration is January 20, 2017. This will be the 58 quadrennial U.S. presidential election and no woman has ever been POTUS in the history of the country since its beginning in 1776. If “iron lady” was the moniker for Margaret Thatcher, the experience and toughness exemplified by Clinton may have to give rise to an even stronger “signature call sign” for Hillary Clinton.
It will be fun politically, culturally, and commercially to see the “girl power” of Angela Merkel, Theresa May, and Hillary Clinton engage on behalf of Germany, United Kingdom, and the United States. Beyond anyone’s political views, the rest of the world surely will be tuned in, follow path in most cases, and be led by the trio of very accomplished and powerful women!