What a week! Over the past few days, women around the globe have broken records, made history, and generally drawn themselves up to great heights. Let’s take a look back, shall we?
On Tuesday, Hillary Clinton became the first woman in American history to accept the presidential nomination of a major political party. After votes were cast on the floor of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, Clinton officially clinched the nomination with 2,382 delegates nationally. “Standing here as my mother’s daughter, and my daughter’s mother, I’m so happy this day has come,” she said in her convention speech on Thursday. “Happy for grandmothers and little girls and everyone in between. Happy for boys and men, too – because when any barrier falls in America, for anyone, it clears the way for everyone.”
Team U.S.A. will send 292 female athletes to the Rio Olympics this year—the largest number of women to compete for any nation in the history of the Games. China had previously held the record, with 289 women representing the country during the 2008 Beijing Olympics. This year’s roster marks only the second time that the U.S. delegation’s female athletes have outnumbered males. It’s an auspicious start to the Games … You know, if you overlook the wildlife homicides, poop-filled waters, and occasional dead bodies floating through Olympic venues.
The momentous peace accord between the Colombian government and FARC rebels has made unprecedented guarantees to women. The agreement includes promises that women in rural areas will receive equal access to land and ownership rights and credit to buy land. It also sets up a commission to investigate sexual violence perpetrated during the bitter, 50-year conflict between the two groups. “The issue of violence against women, especially sexual violence, has … been made a priority so that the victims can seek justice,” said Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, the head of U.N. women. “This has not happened in other peace accords, so it becomes a historic event.”
Latvian women are the tallest in the world, according to a new study published in the journal eLife. A group of around 800 scientists tracked growth trends across 187 countries over the past hundred years. Latvian women topped height charts, which were generally dominated by European countries. American women appear to have lost some of their standing, dropping from fourth place in 1914 to 42nd today. Guatemala is home to the world’s smallest women, who on average measure just under 4 feet 11 inches. Researchers attribute these discrepancies in height to such factors as genetics, nutrition, sanitation, and health care. Moral of the story? Latvian women traveling abroad may face some unique logistical challenges.