THINK AGAIN...MAYBE JUST MAYBE THE SELECTION COMMITTEE FOR THE NOBEL PRIZE IS GENDER BIASED IN DROVES.
Photograph from Science Source
Published May 19, 2013
In April, National Geographic News published a story about the letter in which scientist Francis Crick described DNA to his 12-year-old son. In 1962, Crick was awarded a Nobel Prize for discovering the structure of DNA, along with fellow scientists James Watson and Maurice Wilkins.
Several people posted comments about our story that noted one name was missing from the Nobel roster: Rosalind Franklin, a British biophysicist who also studied DNA. Her data were critical to Crick and Watson's work. But it turns out that Franklin would not have been eligible for the prize—she had passed away four years before Watson, Crick, and Wilkins received the prize, and the Nobel is never awarded posthumously.
But even if she had been alive, she may still have been overlooked. Like many women scientists, Franklin was robbed of recognition throughout her career (See her section below for details.)
She was not the first woman to have endured indignities in the male-dominated world of science, but Franklin's case is especially egregious, said Ruth Lewin Sime, a retired chemistry professor at Sacramento City College who has written on women in science.
Over the centuries, female researchers have had to work as "volunteer" faculty members, seen credit for significant discoveries they've made assigned to male colleagues, and been written out of textbooks.
They typically had paltry resources and fought uphill battles to achieve what they did, only "to have the credit attributed to their husbands or male colleagues," said Anne Lincoln, a sociologist at Southern Methodist University in Texas, who studies biases against women in the sciences.
Today's women scientists believe that attitudes have changed, said Laura Hoopes at Pomona College in California, who has written extensively on women in the sciences—"until it hits them in the face." Bias against female scientists is less overt, but it has not gone away.
Here are six female researchers who did groundbreaking work—and whose names are likely unfamiliar for one reason: because they are women.
Jocelyn Bell Burnell
Born in Northern Ireland in 1943, Jocelyn Bell Burnell discovered pulsars in 1967 while still a graduate student in radio astronomy at Cambridge University in England.
Pulsars are the remnants of massive stars that went supernova. Their very existence demonstrates that these giants didn't blow themselves into oblivion—instead, they left behind small, incredibly dense, rotating stars.
Bell Burnell discovered the recurring signals given off by their rotation while analyzing data printed out on three miles of paper from a radio telescope she helped assemble.
The finding resulted in a Nobel Prize, but the 1974 award in physics went to Anthony Hewish—Bell Burnell's supervisor—and Martin Ryle, also a radio astronomer at Cambridge University.
The snub generated a "wave of sympathy" for Bell Burnell. But in an interview with National Geographic News this month, the astronomer was fairly matter-of-fact.
"The picture people had at the time of the way that science was done was that there was a senior man—and it was always a man—who had under him a whole load of minions, junior staff, who weren't expected to think, who were only expected to do as he said," explained Bell Burnell, now a visiting astronomy professor at the University of Oxford.
But despite the sympathy, and her groundbreaking work, Bell Burnell said she was still subject to the prevailing attitudes toward women in academia.
"I didn't always have research jobs," she said. Many of the positions the astrophysicist was offered in her career were focused on teaching or administrative and management duties.
"[And] it was extremely hard combining family and career," Bell Burnell said, partly because the university where she worked while pregnant had no provisions for maternity leave.
She has since become quite "protective" of women in academia. Some individual schools may give them support, but Bell Burnell wants a systemic approach to boost the numbers of female researchers.
She recently chaired a working group for the Royal Society of Edinburgh, tasked with finding a strategy to boost the number of women in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and math in Scotland. (Learn more about Bell Burnell.)
Born in 1922 in the Bronx, Esther Lederberg would grow up to lay the groundwork for future discoveries on genetic inheritance in bacteria, gene regulation, and genetic recombination.
A microbiologist, she is perhaps best known for discovering a virus that infects bacteria—called the lambda bacteriophage—in 1951, while at the University of Wisconsin.
Lederberg, along with her first husband Joshua Lederberg, also developed a way to easily transfer bacterial colonies from one petri dish to another, called replica plating, which enabled the study of antibiotic resistance. The Lederberg method is still in use today.
Joshua Lederberg's work on replica plating played a part in his 1958 Nobel Prize for physiology or medicine, which he shared with George Beadle and Edward Tatum.
"She deserved credit for the discovery of lambda phage, her work on the F fertility factor, and, especially, replica plating," wrote Stanley Falkow, a retired microbiologist at Stanford University, in an email. But she didn't receive it.
Lederberg also wasn't treated fairly in terms of her academic standing at Stanford, added Falkow, a colleague of Lederberg's who spoke at her memorial service in 2006. "She had to fight just to be appointed as a research associate professor, whereas she surely should have been afforded full professorial rank. She was not alone. Women were treated badly in academia in those days."
Born in Liu Ho, China, in 1912, Chien-Shiung Wu overturned a law of physics and participated in the development of the atom bomb.
Wu was recruited to Columbia University in the 1940s as part of the Manhattan Project and conducted research on radiation detection and uranium enrichment. She stayed in the United States after the war and became known as one of the best experimental physicists of her time, said Nina Byers, a retired physics professor at the University of California, Los Angeles.
In the mid-1950s, two theoretical physicists, Tsung-Dao Lee and Chen Ning Yang, approached Wu to help disprove the law of parity. The law holds that in quantum mechanics, two physical systems—like atoms—that were mirror images would behave in identical ways.
Wu's experiments using cobalt-60, a radioactive form of the cobalt metal, upended this law, which had been accepted for 30 years.
This milestone in physics led to a 1957 Nobel Prize for Yang and Lee—but not for Wu, who was left out despite her critical role. "People found [the Nobel decision] outrageous," said Byers.
Pnina Abir-Am, a historian of science at Brandeis University, agreed, adding that ethnicity also played a role.
Wu died of a stroke in 1997 in New York.
Born in Vienna, Austria, in 1878, Lise Meitner's work in nuclear physics led to the discovery of nuclear fission—the fact that atomic nuclei can split in two. That finding laid the groundwork for the atomic bomb.
Her story is a complicated tangle of sexism, politics, and ethnicity.
After finishing her doctoral degree in physics at the University of Vienna, Meitner moved to Berlin in 1907 and started collaborating with chemist Otto Hahn. They maintained their working relationship for more than 30 years.
After the Nazis annexed Austria in March 1938, Meitner, who was Jewish, made her way to Stockholm, Sweden. She continued to work with Hahn, corresponding and meeting secretly in Copenhagen in November of that year.
Although Hahn performed the experiments that produced the evidence supporting the idea of nuclear fission, he was unable to come up with an explanation. Meitner and her nephew, Otto Frisch, came up with the theory.
Hahn published their findings without including Meitner as a co-author, although several accounts say Meitner understood this omission, given the situation in Nazi Germany.
"That's the start of how Meitner got separated from the credit of discovering nuclear fission," said Lewin Sime, who wrote a biography of Meitner.
The other contributing factor to the neglect of Meitner's work was her gender. Meitner once wrote to a friend that it was almost a crime to be a woman in Sweden. A researcher on the Nobel physics committee actively tried to shut her out. So Hahn alone won the 1944 Nobel Prize in chemistry for his contributions to splitting the atom.
"Meitner's colleagues at the time, including physicist Niels Bohr, absolutely felt she was instrumental in the discovery of nuclear fission," Sime said. But since her name wasn't on that initial paper with Hahn—and she was left off the Nobel Prize recognizing the discovery—over the years, she has not been associated with the finding.
The nuclear physicist died in 1968 in Cambridge, England. (Learn more about Meitner's career.)
Born in 1920 in London, Rosalind Franklin used x-rays to take a picture of DNA that would change biology.
Hers is perhaps one of the most well-known—and shameful—instances of a researcher being robbed of credit, said Lewin Sime.
Franklin graduated with a doctorate in physical chemistry from Cambridge University in 1945, then spent three years at an institute in Paris where she learned x-ray diffraction techniques, or the ability to determine the molecular structures of crystals. (Learn more about her education and qualifications.)
She returned to England in 1951 as a research associate in John Randall's laboratory at King's College in London and soon encountered Maurice Wilkins, who was leading his own research group studying the structure of DNA.
Franklin and Wilkins worked on separate DNA projects, but by some accounts, Wilkins mistook Franklin's role in Randall's lab as that of an assistant rather than head of her own project.
Meanwhile, James Watson and Francis Crick, both at Cambridge University, were also trying to determine the structure of DNA. They communicated with Wilkins, who at some point showed them Franklin's image of DNA—known as Photo 51—without her knowledge.
Photo 51 enabled Watson, Crick, and Wilkins to deduce the correct structure for DNA, which they published in a series of articles in the journal Nature in April 1953. Franklin also published in the same issue, providing further details on DNA's structure.
Franklin's image of the DNA molecule was key to deciphering its structure, but only Watson, Crick, and Wilkins received the 1962 Nobel Prize in physiology or medicine for their work.
Franklin died of ovarian cancer in 1958 in London, four years before Watson, Crick, and Wilkins received the Nobel. Since Nobel prizes aren't awarded posthumously, we'll never know whether Franklin would have received a share in the prize for her work. (Learn more about Franklin and Photo 51.)
Born in 1861 in Vermont, Nettie Stevens performed studies crucial in determining that an organism's sex was dictated by its chromosomes rather than environmental or other factors.
After receiving her doctorate from Bryn Mawr College in Pennsylvania, Stevens continued at the college as a researcher studying sex determination.
By working on mealworms, she was able to deduce that the males produced sperm with X and Y chromosomes—the sex chromosomes—and that females produced reproductive cells with only X chromosomes. This was evidence supporting the theory that sex determination is directed by an organism's genetics.
A fellow researcher, named Edmund Wilson, is said to have done similar work, but came to the same conclusion later than Stevens did.
Stevens fell victim to a phenomenon known as the Matilda Effect—the repression or denial of the contributions of female researchers to science.
Thomas Hunt Morgan, a prominent geneticist at the time, is often credited with discovering the genetic basis for sex determination, said Pomona College's Hoopes. He was the first to write a genetics textbook, she noted, and he wanted to magnify his contributions.
"Textbooks have this terrible tendency to choose the same evidence as other textbooks," she added. And so Stevens' name was not associated with the discovery of sex determination.
Hoopes has no doubt that Morgan was indebted to Stevens. "He corresponded with other scientists at the time about his theories," she said. "[But] his letters back and forth with Nettie Stevens were not like that. He was asking her for details of her experiments."
"When she died [of breast cancer in 1912], he wrote about her in Science, [and] he wrote that he thought she didn't have a broad view of science," said Hoopes. "But that's because he didn't ask her."
And now we'd like to ask: Who would you add to this list of female researchers who did not get the credit they deserved for their work?
Feel sorry for all of them, specially nettie stevens, she even managed to publish her work in her name before t.h.morgan and still today no one knows her name.............
Doesn't just happen in Nobel Prize giving, nor only to women. Plagiarism is rife in any occupation. It is in man's (despicable) human nature to steal another's ideas and accept credit for them!
I see a lot of people claiming that this isn't discrimination or even (ironically) that women are naturally not suited to science etc...
The fact is that discrimination existed and continues today. As a young researcher starting out 10 years ago, I was point blank told to publish my first papers with my initials and not my full name. The reason? I would not be taken as seriously if people knew I was a woman. I needed to establish my reputation first. Only then could I "reveal" that I was a woman.
I can but hope that this attitude will filter out as younger generations rise up through the ranks. I'm not all that optimistic though.
Kudos to Jane Lee for creating this list. In addition, I hope that the substantial barriers that women face in the field of science can be reduced and/or eliminated. That having bee said, It seems challenging to correlate lack of a Nobel Prize with a 'snub'. For example, Stephen Hawking has not received a Nobel Prize. Chien Shiung Wu never won the Nobel Prize, but she certainly had a very successful career including being full professor at Columbia University, as well as election to the National Academy of Sciences. In view of these facts, it's hard for me to view her as having been 'overlooked'.
Rosalind Franklin took a useful photograph. But Watson and Crick figured out what was really going on. Franklin should have won a prize for scientific photography, but not for actual science.
Women continue to be discriminated in higher Ed into the 21st century. I retired in 2010 as University Librarian, but was unable to receive faculty status until 2008. I was never given the title of Dean, although
I started the department of library science for a minor in that area. My successor was named a Dean within 3 years of his hiring. I was University librarian for more than 20 years and never was appointed Dean. This was discriminatory in my opinion.
It is 2014, and based on some of the sexist comments on this board, it is almost comical that anyone would attempt to argue that male scientists in the past might not have withheld credit and stolen research from women.
It really is a shame that men can not recognise womens acheiments r we not supposed 2 live in an equal world where both sexs r equal? makes me wonder!.
I would love to see Maria Montessori, one of the first female physicians in Italy, to receive the attention she deserves for her work. Also facing discrimination, she almost wasn't allowed into medical school but even when she did make it in, she had to perform human dissections alone because it was inappropriate to do so in the presence of other males. She persevered and continued on to study child development while creating an educational philosophy complete with materials that continues to be used today. Montessori's educational method has impacted people like Julia Child, the Google founders, and Alexander Graham Bell.
I think that the first wife of Albert Einstein should be in this list. People know so little about her, and I think she deserves to be known.
Although she wasn't necessarily a scientist, Henrietta Lacks was not credited with her own cells by Johns Hopkins Hospital. The cells were the first cells to become immortal, infinitely dividing because of mutations due to cervical cancer. These cells, or HeLa cells, have had an enormous impact on biotechnology because they are used to this day in laboratory experiments and research. They are so popular that I found out my boyfriend's dad works with them in this lab at work!
Women have suffered great injustices from not being credited for their contributions to science, whether intellectual or literally biological!
There are also many many male scientists who are overlooked and not recognised for various reasons. I bet you could make an even longer list of those. To make this sexist claim in science legitimate, you would need to study whether results presented by a female researcher are less likely to get published and publicised than similar ones from a male researcher; I highly doubt that, at least nowadays.
Vera Rubin, for accurate studies discovering dark matter.
Science is of reason. It is reasonable to understand women did contribute to science in the past and still do. Honor in recognition is honor in integrity; something that cannot be disregarded. Women scientists in the past were overlooked through the lens of ignorance and bias and by the general rule of social conformity. Something that is without a doubt ironic and unreasonable to the scientific mind, because it is through the act of experimentation and analysis one forges new understanding to conventional ideas.
Where is Marie Curie? She was the first woman to win a Nobel Prize, the only woman to win in two fields, and the only person to win in multiple sciences. She was also the first female professor at the University of Paris (La Sorbonne), and in 1995 became the first woman to be entombed on her own merits in Paris' Panthéon.
All everyone ever needs to remember is that men and women are not separate species -- we're all simply human. That's it. Human. There will be smart humans, there will be dumb humans, some tall, some short, some fat, some thin, some loud, some quiet, but they're all just ... human. Humans with different characteristics, different talents and mannerisms picked up from whatever childhood they have. Accept it, move on, and ignore what the exteriors look like, because we're all born from the same place and we all have an equal shot at living, and we all gain different experience from our different characteristics.
"Rosalind Franklin always liked facts. She was logical and precise, and impatient with things that were otherwise. She decided to become a scientist when she was 15, and passed the examination for admission to Cambridge University in 1938. At 26, Franklin had her PhD and the war was just over. She began working in x-ray diffraction -- using x-rays to create images of crystalized solids. She pioneered the use of this method in analyzing complex, unorganized matter such as large biological molecules, and not just single crystals.
"In 1950, she was invited to King's College to join a team of scientists studying living cells. The leader of the team assigned her to work on DNA with a graduate student. Franklin's assumption was that it was her own project. The laboratory's second-in-command, Maurice Wilkins, was on vacation at the time, and when he returned, their relationship was muddled. He assumed she was to assist his work; she assumed she'd be the only one working on DNA. They had powerful personality differences as well: Franklin direct, quick, decisive, and Wilkins shy, speculative, and passive. This would play a role in the coming years as the race unfolded to find the structure of DNA.
"Franklin made marked advances in x-ray diffraction techniques with DNA. She adjusted her equipment to produce an extremely fine beam of x-rays. She extracted finer DNA fibers than ever before and arranged them in parallel bundles. And she studied the fibers' reactions to humid conditions. All of these allowed her to discover crucial keys to DNA's structure. Wilkins shared her data, without her knowledge, with James Watson and Francis Crick, at Cambridge University, and they pulled ahead in the race, ultimately publishing the proposed structure of DNA in March, 1953.
"The strained relationship with Wilkins and other aspects of King's College (the women scientists were not allowed to eat lunch in the common room where the men did, for example) led Franklin to seek another position. She headed her own research group at Birkbeck College in London. But the head of King's let her go on the condition she would not work on DNA. Franklin wrapped up her DNA work and went on to other studies. She turned her attention to viruses, publishing 17 papers in five years. Her group's findings laid the foundation for structural virology.
"While on a professional visit to the United States, Franklin had episodes of pain that she soon learned were ovarian cancer. She continued working over the next two years, through three operations and experimental chemotherapy and a 10-month remission. She worked up until a few weeks before her death on April 16, 1958, at the age of 37 in Chelsea, London.
"Exposure to X-ray radiation is sometimes considered a possible factor in her illness, though she was no more careless than other laboratory staff of the time. Other members of her family have died of cancer, and the incidence of cancer is known to be disproportionately high amongst Ashkenazi Jews [through a BRCA gene founder mutation]."
How sadly ironic that the very woman who set the stage for the DNA structure discovery, which in 1994 helped make it possible to genetically test and confirm BRCA carriers like Angelina Jolie and me (with familial cancer holocausts generation, after generation, after generation), did not have access the test that could have saved her life so she could go on with the research she loved and win a Nobel Prize.
This is not a suitable article for National Geographic. But it does suggest a really major N.G. editorial shift in the direction of Political Correctness. Which I'd noticed in the N.G. book Atlas of American History, where several chapters were simply turned over to "Black Studies Department" propagandizing. The National Geographic Society is a very ancient and respected society; but it could ruin itself rapidly if it follows this route. The phony "Matilda Effect" etc.
I don’t know the others, but the obvious distortions about the most famous case, Rosalind Franklin, cast doubt on how the author of his article presents all the other women’s stories. Nobel Prizes are not awarded posthumously, and Dr. Franklin didn’t live long enough to be eligible.
Aside from that, it is doubtful she did anything worthy of that prize. She had taken the x-ray crystallography photos but had let them sit having no idea what they meant. The technical skill she displayed in taking the images was competent, but not particularly noteworthy. There were multiple, identical crystallography images available at the time, which were similarly ignored or misinterpreted. The genius was in the fact that Watson and Crick tied the images in with their other work, and recognized that this confirmed their hypothesis that DNA formed a double helix, something Franklin, and everyone else (including Linus Pauling) had missed.
"The Nobel is never awarded posthumously."
Not true- Ralph Steinman died hours before the committee chose him for the award in Medicine, 2011.
@Kenneth Sandale Franklin should have still got the nobel prize over Wilkins, what exactly did he do?
@Veronica D. Hi Veronica, it gives me great pleasure to tell you that in Brisbane, Qld, Australia were I live, their are Independant Schools honouring Montessori, they have her name and they use her philosophy to educate the children. We have them on the Southside of Brisbane and also on the Northside of Brisbane. Their is also another set of Independant Schools honouring Stainer as well. Their is talk to join both independant schools together as they have very similar philosophies to educate the students. I don't know if this has gone ahead but it's nice to see that a very fine lady has been honoured this way and hope that she continues to shine down on this school and may it continue on.
This is beyond absurd.
@Kyrill T . Kyrill you must remember that these ladies that we are all discussing here, were not just researchers, this is a role that their male
equivalent gave to them, even though they were highly educated and should have been given a higher position other than a researcher of which I call a lab rat. They were not just lab rats, even though the male equivalent would say they were. I believe it still happens today, "yes, we live in the 21st Century, but I think it's amazing how we haven't moved the goal posts very far from it's original position, Equal Opportunities, yeah right".
@Kyrill TWhy are you "doubting" rather than approaching the question with an open mind? That "doubt" without evidence is anathema to good science.
Is this "nowadays" enough for you? I'm sure it's very, very easy to dismiss the idea that sexism still plays a tremendous part in society if you don't ever have to experience it firsthand.
@Kyrill T Not exaclty. You would expect that if 2% of all scientists were female and significantly fewer that 2% of studies being published were written by female authors, then discrimination has likely taken place. You seem to imply that if females only made say, 20% of all scientists, that we should set the bar for discrimination by supposing that there is a 50-50 shot a female will get published. Also, the CLAIM is MORE that women don't make into the HISTORY BOOKS despite their paramount works! I don't know HOW ya' could argue with a straight face that this point is not both strong and sound! I'm sure you'll find a way, though... ;) Cheers!
@Eitak Nostrebor Yes. I demand cultural change! Then, the rest will follow...
@Claudia Mink Great comment!
@Sona Newton Hi Sona. I realize Marie Curie is a pioneering woman in science, but compared to the rest of the women I decided to include in this article, she is relatively well-known. Although, I'm sure she did face her share of discrimination
@Debby Bock If only everyone could be considered on their merits, rather than on the nature of their birth...
Women are not > men. Women are different by a circumstance of birth.
@Marly Wietzke your detailed review on R. Franklin's work is better than the main article and I appreciate that you shared the facts that I think were not shared in the main article.
In fact, I wonder, since the theme of the article was only to show a pessimistic attitude towards women in science, many other aspects of what REALLY happens inside had been less described.
Thanks for sharing.
@Marly Wietzke Thanks for giving us a deeper understanding of Dr. Franklin and her work.
@George Farnhouse Why does this bother you so much?
@George Farnhouse Sorry to offend you, but women are 50 pct of the population, this is a concern for all of us in the future of science. Go back to reading your TinTin.
@Thomas Lynch if there were other pictures available.........why did they have to steal from her file her photos and data that she had worked so hard for???? Dont u think they had access to those othef available pictures??????
@Thomas Lynch They took her photos from her file without asking her and put them into a book which then went into an article, but she also wrote a detailed analysis on the DNA process along with these photo's, I would say she more than just helped thankyou and if you actually read all the article about her and the other ladies, they were highly educated, they were given the role of researcher by their male equivalent, which means that these men believed that they were only meant to be lab researchers "lab rats", so her contribution is important. Even though you don't think so, read all the facts before making just a little assumption in future.
@Thomas Lynch still, it would have been ever-so-nice of them if they were to include her as a source in their academic papers, as-is otherwise the mandatory practice in submitting a thesis ...or so i heard.
@Sophia Georghiou Actually he died three days before but the committee did not know so decided the award would stand. I remember some discussion about whether he was going to get the award.
@Sophia Georghiou That's more a 'whoopsie' than an intentional act.
@Melissa Dunn @Kyrill T The point is mahatma gandhi was nominated for noble prize (peace) twice but did not get one......!!! what i wonder that which factor becomes more important that their research work wasn't recognized or is it that a man got in place of the woman.... because stealing away research was actually prevalent and continues even today but why this sexism angle makes it so much important i don't know.....!!! probably because that gives a sense of superiority over, i suppose, men..
what you are doing is wrong the process in which you are doing is also wrong... what you are doing is making a case divided on basis of something(doesn't has to be gender all the time)
and presenting it as if it was particularly done because of that division.... @Melissa Dunn you are probably not going to reply to it but if you are reading it I want to ask you a question!!
dividing on the basis gender(sexism) what did you achieve??? because some one else is going to publish another list of scientists who did not get their due!! meanwhile you will be focusing the bias towards women in particular!! someone sitting home watching you on tv will probably hate you(like me) because you took the opportunity to use it for your advantage in case you are not creating more cooperativeness but but are making this even more divisive!!! if you reply don't give me a feminist bulls**** think for a moment then give me a fitting reply.......
@Jane Lee No kidding- there was a reason that she was a Polish woman who married a Frenchman. Apparently she couldn't get a research position in Poland at the time, explicitly because she was a woman.
bizarre comment - everyone is 'different by a circumstance of birth' however that does not justify ignorance and jealousy in science. Intelligence and scientific aptitude is not between your legs.
@Laurent V. what is bothering me is that you dont ask the question "why is this article only about women"?was this division necessary for showing how their work was looked over......??? are women at any more danger of this hazard than a man?? I doubt your answer will come as positive........
Ah, you're a dog eating chineseman! That explains it. Why have you learnt English if the Chinese are 'winning' ? Surely, the life of a cheap immigrant is not worth the sacrifice?
@Sayantan Bose The reason why the gender is highlighted is that often women are discriminated in scientific circles and the reason is the perception that women are not good at science. Hence the gender based list. You may not be aware of the discrimination, but it exists and women were not paid for professorship or lecturership and were appointed without pay as "volunteers". This is a well documented fact. We are trying to correct the bias against women, hence we are producing the list of women achievers.
Is this too difficult for you to understand?
@Sayantan Bose You are trying to deny the truth, it was really sexist. It WAS sexist and misogynist. Women were indeed not recognized for the mere fact that they were women. Women weren't even encouraged to study science, they weren't even allowed to do certain things(e.g Montesorri and her having to study bodies at night when there weren't men around) just because of gender. The truth is stereotypes exist and some people will go out of their way to keep women doing the "feminine" thing and men the "masculine". We know for a fact that a few centuries ago women still couldn't do a whole bunch of things that men were entitled to by birth, even if they wrote a book, which seems the most innocent thing in the world, they had to publish under a male's name or with a pseudonym. They couldn't vote or hold a property's title or have bank accounts. They were left to the mercy of men and that's what bothers me. This article is informing people not telling them "go take a stand against men". As a science major is good to know that other women took part in some of the world's most important discoveries and allows me to see just how capable we are. What is wrong here is that they weren't recognized for their job, most of these stories aren't in the textbooks! Pick up a science book, any book, and you'll see more male names than females, that is if you find any at all. Textbooks are the most official source and one should not need to be made aware of this information on the internet. To make my final statement I will tell you I believe in equality and I acknowledge the fact that men also have had it hard in female dominated job fields, but to diminish the authenticity of women's or any human being's struggle is something I don't accept.
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