Media mogul Oprah Winfrey gave the keynote speech at the 2019 Women in the World Summit which took place on Wednesday, April 10 at David H. Koch Theater at Lincoln Center in New York City.
- She begins her keynote address with a speech from 19th century abolitionist and women’s rights activist Sojourner Truth.
“That man over there says that women need to be helped into carriages, and lifted over ditches, and to have the best place everywhere. Nobody ever helps me into carriages, or over mud-puddles, or gives me any best place! And ain’t I a woman? Look at me! Look at my arm! I have ploughed and planted, and gathered into barns, and no man could head me! And ain’t I a woman? I could work as much and eat as much as a man – when I could get it – and bear the lash as well! And ain’t I a woman? I have borne thirteen children, and seen most all sold off to slavery, and when I cried out with my mother’s grief, none but Jesus heard me! And ain’t I a woman?”
- “We women people are used to saving the world,” she says, among them a rising wave of women politicians in the U.S. who have been “forged by fire.”
- “The game was not built on a level playing field,” Oprah says, encouraging women to use their positive energy to help combat inequity
- “We have to make the choice to channel our own inner Jacindas (Prime Minister of New Zealand),” adding that human connection and acknowledgement is the only way to combat global problems such as climate change, racism, and sexism.
Watch the full speech below: