Thursday, April 21, 2016

Women in Mathematics Count!

     The theme for 2016 Mathematics Awareness Month is "The Future of Prediction."  And today I am wondering what date can be predicted for when the achievements of women in mathematics will be recognized with the same awareness as those of men.
How many female mathematicians can you name? 
Here are links to two articles to to help you lengthen your list of math-women"12 Brilliant Female Mathematicians You Should Know" -- an article by Olivia Harrison whose list starts with Hypatia (who lived around 400 AD) and continues to the 21st century, featuring Maryam Mirzakhani, an Iranian mathematician at Stanford who in 2014 won the prestigious Fields Medal for her work related to the symmetry of curved surfaces. Judy Green adds important names in her article "How Many Women Mathematicians Can You Name?"
     For still more, visit my 2015 post "The culture for women in math and the sciences";  additionally, a search of this blog using "math women" will lead to a host of  names and links.  Enjoy!
     Here are the closing lines of a poem of mine about the brilliant mathematician, Emmy Noether (1883-1935):   

           In spite of Emmy's talents,
           always there were reasons
           not to give her rank
           or permanent employment.
           She's a pacifist, a woman.
           She's a woman and a Jew.
           Her abstract thinking
           is female and abstruse.

           Today, history books proclaim that Noether
           is the greatest mathematician
           her sex has produced. They say she was good
           for a woman.

The full poem is available here.

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