Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Woman of the Week - Margaret Thatcher

I saw "Iron Lady" with my mother over the weekend. I didn't know much about Margaret Thatcher before seeing this movie. She is an amazing woman who has had a brilliant career in politics. While I don't necessarily agree with her politics, I respect her as a leader.

Thatcher is a self-made woman. She won a place at Oxford where she studied chemistry. She married her husband, Denis Thatcher, in 1951, and they had twins in 1953. In the 1950's Margaret trained as a lawyer, and she was elected to Parliament in 1959. In the early 1970's, she was the Education Minister. Then in 1975, she was elected Conservative Leader. From 1979 - 1990, Thatcher served as England's first female Prime Minister (her 11-year term is a record unmatched by anyone in the 20th century). Since her third term as Prime Minister ended, she has remained an important political figure. She has also written two best-selling memoirs.

I really enjoyed the "Iron Lady." The movie focuses on Margaret Thatcher's retirement while showing flashbacks of her years in politics. She suffered several minor strokes in 2002, and her husband died in 2003. Even though the movie was rather dark, there were also several positive messages. When her husband asked her to marry him, she said, "I won't be one of those women who dies washing a tea cup." She meant that she wanted to be more than a housewife. She wanted to make a difference in the world. Thatcher said to one of her doctors, "It used to be about trying to do something. Now it is about trying to be someone." I thought that was very true. In general, people these days don't seem to care as much about making a difference in the world. We can all learn from Margaret Thatcher's example that it is important to strive to make the world a better place!

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