At only 19 years of age, Malala Yousafzai has become not only one of the world’s most admired and inspiring teenagers, but one of the world’s most forceful advocates for the education of girls as well.
Malala was an activist from an early age. She first rose to prominence in her native Pakistan after writing a blog post for the BBC Urdu, in which she detailed her life in the Taliban-occupied region in the northwest of the country. In her heartfelt letter, Malala spoke out strongly against the Talibans’ ban on girls attending school. Her post was published under a pseudonym, but her identity was eventually revealed as she became an increasingly vocal champion in her country of girls’ right to education.
In 2012, a Taliban gunman boarded Malala’s school bus and shot the teenager in the head. But miraculously, she survived the assassination attempt. Her recovery was broadcast by media around the world, and by the time she was released from the hospital in January 2013, Malala’s story had gone global. Rather than be cowed by her brush with death, the brave 15 year-old immediately stepped up her campaigning. Her 2013 memoir, I am Malala: The Story of the Girl Who Stood Up for Education and was Shot by the Taliban, became an international bestseller, and helped launch a worldwide movement in favour of girls’ right to education. At only 17, Malala became the youngest ever recipient of a Nobel Peace Prize, and she was named one of TIME’s most influential people for three years running, in 2013, 2014, and 2015.
Malala’s fearlessness and resilience in the face of terror and extremism have made her an inspiration to countless girls and feminists around the world. So in honor of International Women’s Day, here are the Top 12 most inspiring Malala Yousafzai quotes.
Top 12 Most Inspiring Malala Yousafzai Quotes
Let us remember: One book, one pen, one child, and one teacher, can change the world.
I raise up my voice — not so I can shout but so that those without a voice can be heard… We cannot succeed when half of us are held back.
If one man can destroy everything, why can’t one girl change it?
We realize the importance of our voices only when we are silenced.
I tell my story, not because it is unique, but because it is not. It is the story of many girls.
When the whole world is silent, even one voice becomes powerful.
Kindness can only be repaid with kindness. It can’t be repaid with expressions like ‘thank you’ and then forgotten.
Our men think earning money and ordering around others is where power lies. They don’t think power is in the hands of the woman who takes care of everyone all day long, and gives birth to their children.
With guns you can kill terrorists, with education you can kill terrorism.
Education is neither eastern nor western. Education is education and it’s the right of every human being.
Though we loved school, we hadn’t realized how important education was until the Taliban tried to stop us. Going to school, reading and doing our homework wasn’t just a way of passing time, it was our future.
Let us make our future now, and let us make our dreams tomorrow’s reality.