Cover image for Renaissance women in science
Renaissance women in science
Van der Does, Louise Q.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Lanham, Md. : University Press of America, [1999]

Physical Description:
iii, 192 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm

Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
Q141 .V25 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

On Order



Renaissance Women in Science contains the fascinating stories of seventeen scientists who unlocked secrets of the universe and whose discoveries helped change the future of the world. Pursuing careers ranging from astronomy and atomic research to chemistry and medicine, a number of these women went on to win Nobel prizes for their work. All were dedicated to learning and discovery and many contributed to a humanitarian legacy in the form of improved worker rights, environmental protection, and better health care for others. The book reveals the motivations of these extraordinary women and explores the circumstances that allowed them to break through the barriers of their time, race, and gender to pursue their dreams. Their stories will inspire us all to reach beyond the ordinary.

Author Notes

Rita J. Simon is university professor in the School of Public Affairs at the Washington College of Law at American University.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 1

Choice Review

Renaissance Women in Science is a collection of 16 brief biographies of 19th- and 20th-century women scientists, beginning with astronomer Maria Mitchell and concluding with X-ray crystallographer Dorothy Mary Crowfoot Hodgkin. The title reveals the guiding principle for selection as well as the way in which the biographies are presented: these women all made original contributions to their disciplines and shattered contemporary notions of feminine roles by choosing to subordinate domestic and family concerns to a life of scientific discovery. The tone of the book is predominantly moral and exhortatory: every chapter ends with a sentence along the lines of "this amazing woman, who overcame a crippling childhood disease, demonstrated that with hard work and perseverance, an individual can stand on her own, beat the odds, and realize her dreams." Although it covers a longer time period, this book is far less comprehensive than the more scholarly Ladies in the Laboratory? American and British Women in Science, 1800-1900 (CH, Oct'98), by Mary R.S. Creese, and less informative about the actual science than American Women Scientists, by Moira Reynolds (CH, Jan'00). Its most appropriate audience may well be adolescent girls. No index; extensive list of consulted sources, well organized by chapter. General readers. M. H. Chaplin; Wellesley College