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March 8, 2013updated 05 May 2016 1:16pm

On International Women's Day, Some Inspiring and Some Worrying Pieces from the Spear's Archive

By Spear's

It makes sense for Spear’s to share some of our pieces from the archive featuring inspiring women and covering causes important to women (which are then of course important to everyone).

Since it’s International Women’s Day, it makes sense for Spear’s to share some of our pieces from the archive featuring inspiring women and covering causes important to women (which are then of course important to everyone).

Meanwhile, a browse through any section of the website will reveal some of our first-rank female contributors, from Anne McElvoyLucia van der Post and Daisy Prince to editorial team members Sophie McBain and Emily Rookwood. We shouldn’t forget our illustrators either, like Frann Preston-Gannon, whose star is rising very fast, and Femke de Jong.
Female Genital Cutting
Female Genital Cutting is a ruinous problem for millions of women around the world, who face barbarous, unnecessary, often-unskilled ‘surgery’. Sophie McBain spoke to the founder of the Orchid Project, which educates villages in Afrian about the dangers of FGC. While you don’t often find the word ‘vaginas’ in Spear’s, it’s something we need to talk about.
Steve Shirley, Entrepreneur and Philanthropist
Dame Stephanie Shirley is one of the most inspirational people I have had the honour of meeting. Sent to England on the Kindertransport, in the Sixties in a bold and unlikely move she set up a women-only IT company, which she eventually launched onto the stock market. Her second career has been as a philanthropist in the causes of IT and autism. This extract from her excellent memoir Let It Go is moving, humbling and motivating.
Vivien Duffiled, Philanthropist
Dame Vivien Duffield, unlike Steve Shirley, was born into money but, like Steve Shirley, has become a generous and influential philanthropist. We talked to her about her support of the arts.
Divorce Equality
The past few years have seen a massive shift towards rights for women in high net worth divorce cases: they have gone from receiving the minimal amount they needed to live to having their full contribution to married life recognised. Now divorces start with a 50-50 split, a great step for equal rights. This piece illustrated the benefit of an English divorce for a wife.
Elena Baturina, Businesswoman
When male oligarchs were carving up Russia’s resource in the early Nineties, Elena Baturina was building up her own companies. Now Russia’s richest woman, she spoke to Sophie McBain about her journey.
Women and Art
One continued area of imbalance is in the art world: art by women fetches lower prices and is far less represented in museums and galleries. Ivan Lindsay wondered why this was. Anthony Haden-Guest, on the other hand, profiled two key feminist artists.
But I’m Just a Girl
In some sectors of the wealth management world, women are taken seriously and respected: most of the top divorce lawyers are women; Helena Morrissey, who has spoken at a Spear’s event, is the head of Newton, with nine kids to boot; and Jane Fraser is the head of Citi Private Bank. But in other parts, they are patronised as much as ever. 
Women in the Middle East
Given that they control $500 billion in wealth in the Middle East, why are women still badly catered for by local banks?
Ladies in Print
Spear’s has reviewed many books by and about women, from Gillian Tett’s magisterial explanation of the financial crisis, Fool’s Gold (to which we awarded the Spear’s Financial Book of the Year prize) to Anne de Courcy’s new book on the husband-hunters of the Raj.

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