Jóhanna Sigurðardóttir

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(1942 – )

Jóhanna Sigurðardóttir became the first female prime minister of Iceland and the first openly lesbian head of state in 2009. She has served in the Icelandic legislature as a Social Democrat since 1978.

She also did much early work as a union activist, a traditional path for many left wing politicians. In 2010, her government banned strip clubs and payment for nudity in restaurants in a move that invoked a recurring debate among feminists about cash for sex. With the legalization of same sex marriage in Iceland in 2010, she married her long-time partner. In an 2010 interview with the New Statesman, she observed that “My long experience in politics tells me that egalitarian policies are the best way to unite and empower people, and are also a necessary counterweight to he sometimes dividing and detrimental influence of market forces.”

 

Resources

McDonald, Alyssa. 2010. “Jóhanna Sigurðardóttir—Extended Interview.” New Statesman. Jan. 15. http://www.newstatesman.com/international-politics/2010/01/iceland-interview-economy

Veronica Strong-Boag

Veronica Strong-Boag

Veronica Strong-Boag, Ph.D, FRSC, is a Canadian historian specializing in the modern history of women and children in Canada. She is Professor Emerita of Women's History at the University of British Columbia. In 1988 she won the John A. Macdonald Prize (awarded to the best book in Canadian history) for her study of the lives of women in Canada between the wars, entitled The New Day Recalled. In 1993–94 she served as president of the Canadian Historical Association. She was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada in 2001. In July 2012 the Royal Society of Canada announced that Strong-Boag would be awarded the J. B. Tyrrell Historical Medal "for outstanding work in the history of Canada."