Qiu Jin (1875-1907)
Qiu Jin, the “Chinese Joan of Arc”, was a radical women’s rights activist who defied tradition to become the leader of a revolutionary army. Qiu Jin spoke out against oppressive practices such as footbinding and demanded equal opportunities for women. She attempted an armed uprising against the corrupt Qing Dynasty, for which she was arrested and executed. She became the first female martyr for China’s 1911 Revolution and is celebrated as a national heroine today.