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Belle Benchley and the Creation of the Modern Zoo (Women in Science 34)

Belle Benchley and the Creation of the Modern Zoo (Women in Science 34)

Think back to your last zoo trip. More likely than not, most of the larger animals were contained in open air facilities, with features tailored to the animal’s native landscape. The animals probably had free access to sleeping quarters away from the public view, and diets based upon their natural food sources. You might not have seen it, but there was almost definitely an on-site veterinary... »

Julia Robinson and the Cracking of Hilbert’s Tenth Problem (Women in Science 33)

Julia Robinson and the Cracking of Hilbert’s Tenth Problem (Women in Science 33)

For mathematicians, the only thing more exciting than proving a theorem is proving that it can never be proven. These anti-proofs, if you will, stand firmly against all future progress of humanity and state, “No matter how clever you become, what new branches of thought you invent, you’ll never be able to do this. Sorry about it.” The most famous of these is Kurt Gödel’s 19... »

Breaking the Shackles Procreative: Margaret Sanger and the Creation Of The Pill. (Women in Science 32)

Breaking the Shackles Procreative: Margaret Sanger and the Creation Of The Pill. (Women in Science 32)

In 1912, it was against the law to publish a book that contained descriptions of birth control methods. It was against the law to even expound the theoretical benefits of birth control as a general notion. It was against the law to put a contraceptive diaphragm into the hands of a desperate mother of twelve in an attempt to save her life from serial pregnancy. It was against the law to give a woma... »

Making Continents Move: The Ocean Cartography of Marie Tharp (Women in Science 31)

Making Continents Move: The Ocean Cartography of Marie Tharp (Women in Science 31)

If you’re a scientist, and you’ve lived long enough, there’s a good chance that you’ll see your life’s work overwritten and forgotten in a long, piecemeal process blandly punctuated by retrospective award banquets every half decade or so. Science moves on, but usually at a pace that lets you keep your sense of self-worth well into your autumn years. Every so often, ho... »

The Monster in Dr. McClintock: The Twisted Tale of Jumping Genes

The Monster in Dr. McClintock: The Twisted Tale of Jumping Genes

Isolation makes monsters, and none so monstrous as those who willingly seek it. It is hard to work up a great deal of sympathy for individuals who, under the banner of intellectual freedom, demand the resources to do whatever they want, however they want to do it, and then routinely bite the hands of those who make their ideal life possible. The heroism of hyper individualism runs hard against our... »

The Illustrated Women In Science: Year One!

The Illustrated Women In Science: Year One!

Thrill to the jungle-crawling entomology of Maria Merian, cheer at the multi-dimensional mathematics of Maryam Mirzakhani, weep at the tragic end of Sofia Kovalevskaya, and gasp at the universe-cracking insights of Emmy Noether!  All 26 of the MadArtLab Women In Science cartoons and essays are now available in one handy volume, dear friends.  With luscious full color interiors and a lovely introdu... »

Of  Artificial Radiation  and  Natural Genius:  The Chemistry of Irène Joliot-Curie  (Women In Science 29)

Of Artificial Radiation and Natural Genius: The Chemistry of Irène Joliot-Curie (Women In Science 29)

  Radioactivity is a great thing. Terrible, but great. The medical applications of radioactively tagged molecules, as Rosalyn Yalow proved, are legion, and have saved millions of lives since their introduction. Tricky thing, though – the big atoms that tend to be radioactive also tend to be achingly rare and not particularly present in biological compounds. Radium, to take just one exam... »

Unearthing the World Jurassic: Mary Anning and the Founding of Paleontology (Women In Science 28)

Unearthing the World Jurassic: Mary Anning and the Founding of Paleontology (Women In Science 28)

As the tide rolls out, a woman in a hardened bonnet and loose fitting clothes scrambles across the crumbling cliffs of Lyme Regis, a large sack flung over her back, and pick axe in hand. She is Mary Anning, out on the hunt for fossils to sell in order to earn enough money to eat, and before her fifteenth birthday, her discoveries will challenge all established wisdom about the Earth’s geolog... »

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