“You held me down, but I got up
Get ready ’cause I’ve had enough”
—“Roar” by Katy Perry
Find out what it means to me
R-E-S-P-E-C-T / Take care, TCB”
—“Respect” by Aretha Franklin
“I am woman, hear me roar
In numbers too big to ignore
And I know too much to go back an’ pretend
‘Cause I’ve heard it all before
And I’ve been down there on the floor
No one’s ever gonna keep me down again”
—”I Am Woman” by Helen Reddy
These lyrics, from three of the most quintessential female empowerment anthems in history, represent the strength and resilience of women.
A catchy tune and awesome lyrics drive home the message of empowerment, but how do you capture that same fierce message in an academic essay? How do you write an empowering essay on women without sounding dry and boring and without rehashing an encyclopedia version of a biography?
Try one of these 15 fierce topics.
15 Fierce Topics for an Empowering Essay on Women
Let me start by saying that one way to approach an essay on women is to pick a random woman from history and start writing. You can research all there is to know about her or perhaps focus on one key aspect of her accomplishments.
While this type of research paper can be effective, there are plenty of other, more original ways to approach this type of assignment.
Here are 15 topic ideas to get you started on an empowering essay on women. (I’ve linked to a few example essays too, so make sure to check them out for added inspiration.)
Compare and contrast essay topics
A compare and contrast essay requires you to identify similarities and/or differences between topics, such as comparing Taylor Swift to Ariana Grande.
But writing a compare and contrast essay doesn’t simply mean that you’ll list points of comparison. You need to have a central focus, something that ties your comparisons together.
Want to learn more about compare and contrast essay writing? Check out Compare and Contrast Essay Tips From a Kibin Editor.
#1: Leadership styles of women vs. leadership styles of men
Consider focusing on both strengths and weakness of each leadership style. If you don’t want to focus on a specific leadership style, you might focus on two female leaders, such as corporate CEOs, heads of countries, etc.
#2: Compare women’s roles in society through various time periods
You might focus on women’s roles in love, marriage, politics, films, or employment.
#3: Compare Olympic or professional female athletes
Try comparing female athletes on the basis of training styles, awards, or playing strategies.
#4: Compare directing styles of two female film directors
Consider Kathryn Bigelow, Sofia Coppola, and Nora Ephron to start.
#5: Compare and contrast female literary characters
Not sure where to start? Perhaps begin with Hester Prynne from The Scarlet Letter and Jane Eyre. (Need a refresher course on writing literary analysis essays? Read How to Write a Literary Analysis That Works.)
Reflective essay topics
The goal of a reflective essay is to consider how a person, event, or experience affected you. The goal isn’t to simply tell a story like you would in a narrative essay, but to examine the situation and explain how someone or some event shaped you.
#6: Reflect on one singular, yet simple moment with your mom
The event itself doesn’t have to be grand, but the impact it had on you should be evident in your essay. For instance, you might reflect on a childhood experience of seeing your mother help a stranger find her car in a parking lot. Examine how this one small act of kindness impacted your attitude toward helping others.
#7: Reflect on the influence of a female celebrity
Did Beyonce’s words strike a chord with you? Did Maya Angelou’s poems or speeches change you forever? If so, you might have the perfect angle for your essay.
#8: Explain how one chance meeting with a woman affected you
A chance meeting may only last a few moments, but it might change your life forever. For instance, did you strike up a conversation with a woman at the train station, and did her story inspire you to change your own life? Did you meet a woman in a shelter who changed your views of society?
#9: Write about a teacher who inspired you
A female teacher may have inspired you to great things, such as trying to save the world, or your teacher may have inspired you in other smaller, yet equally important ways. For example, maybe a teacher convinced you to try broccoli, and that one experience caused you to become a food critic, a chef, or maybe even a teacher yourself.
#10: Reflect on your own awesome self
If your assignment guidelines allow it, you might write about your own female empowerment story or how you work to inspire others. As Helen Reddy would sing, “I am woman, hear me roar.”
Argumentative/persuasive essay topics
Argumentative essays and persuasive essays have the same goal: to convince your audience. While a persuasive essay might allow you to write in first person point of view and use personal examples to support your claims, an argumentative essay is more likely to require you to use evidence from sources to support your assertions.
#11: Female heroines as role models
Consider how female heroines in films (either past or present) are role models for young girls. Are all heroines created equal? Do some roles still stereotype women?
#12: Girls run the world
Though it’s said to be a man’s world, you might argue that it is women who are actually in charge. Need evidence? Just ask Beyonce.
#13: Female empowerment through fashion
Does your outfit ever make you feel sexy or empowered? How do men view that same outfit? Consider whether fashion choices—such as high heels, dresses, or hairstyles—empower or sexualize women.
#14: The influence of women’s suffrage
What was the most important outcome of history.
#15: Religion’s influence on female empowerment
How have various religions restricted females, preventing empowerment? Can you argue that a specific religion has encouraged female empowerment?
Hear Me Roar
With a few essay tips, some sample papers, and a topic for your empowering essay on women, you should be ready to roar and let your voice be heard.
If you’ve finished a draft but feel like your essay isn’t quite up to par, check out these posts to help make sure your paper stands out:
- Authoritative Voice: How to Write Like You Mean It
- Concise Writing: How to Write a Strong Essay in Fewer Words
- Essay Formatting Survival Guide (Infographic)
- How to Revise an Essay and Make It Better Than Ever
Still feel like your roar isn’t quite strong enough? Let the experts at Kibin help.