In Brief

International Women's Day: Seven inspirational female pioneers

From the first woman in space to the first female to take up a seat in the House of Commons

Events are taking place around the world today to mark International Women's Day 2017 and the ongoing fight for equality.

This year has already proven a turbulent one for women's rights, with the inauguration of Donald Trump proving a catalyst for unprecedented coordinated action by feminist groups.

The day after the inauguration, millions of women - and their male allies - gathered in cities around the world to protest against the new US President, who has a documented history of misogynistic comments, and his administration's stances on abortion access, LGBT rights, climate change and immigration.

Meanwhile, research published by the TUC this week also reveals that the average woman in the UK earns 18 per cent less than her male counterparts.

"This pay gap means that across the board, women effectively work for free for the first 66 days of the year," said TUC general secretary Frances O'Grady.

The same research found that women of Pakistani, Bangladeshi and Africa face an even bigger pay disparity.

However, despite the challenges faced by women around the world, International Women's Day provides an opportunity to celebrate the achievements of pioneering women.

Click on the gallery above to read about seven inspirational females.

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