Academic journal article Language Arts

The Flying Girl: How Aída De Acosta Learned to Soar

Academic journal article Language Arts

The Flying Girl: How Aída De Acosta Learned to Soar

Article excerpt

The Flying Girl: How Aída de Acosta Learned to Soar Written by Margarita Engle Illustrated by Sara Palacios Atheneum, 2018, unpaged, ISBN 978-1-4814-4502-3

Almost six months before the Wright Brothers made their historic flight in Kitty Hawk, a teenage girl visiting Paris insisted on piloting an aircraft. Aída de Acosta, born of Cuban and Spanish descent, became captivated with the airships of Brazilian inventor Alberto Santos-Dumont when she glanced up one day in 1903 and saw him flying one above the city. With the resolve, "If that man can fly, so can I," Aída shirked the sexist conventions of her time that girls need only attend to domestic chores and marriage prospects. Taking lessons in secret from SantosDumont, Aída learned to maneuver the controls of a dirigible and ultimately convinced him that she could pilot it alone. …

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