Women, Science, and Myth: Gender Beliefs from Antiquity to the Present

By Sue V. Rosser | Go to book overview

Industry

SUZANNE GAGE BRAINARD

Historically, men have traditionally dominated the fields of science and particularly engineering. However, the civil rights movement in the 1960s and Title IX in the early 1970s made possible the increase in women pursuing careers in the science and engineering professions during the early 1970s (Selby 1999). In the 1980s the National Science Foundation (NSF) projected a serious shortfall of scientists and engineers (National Research Council 1994). In order to keep the United States’ competitive edge, the rationale followed with the need to target other pools of talent such as women and minorities to meet the demands of the workforce. Coupled with the legislative policies of the 1960s and 1970s, the idea that women and minorities are an untapped source for the scientific and engineering workforce became a driving argument to fuel policy initiatives in the 1980s. The 1990s cast doubt on the accuracy of those NSF projections. Regardless, by the middle of the 1990s both the science community and the industrial sector began to see the advantages of diversity in the science community as well as the workforce.

In many ways, the industrial sector was quicker to see the advantages of diversity. Since corporations were facing shortages of traditional male employees, they became aware that the workforce of the future was either not going to exist or it would need to look very different from the workforce of today. Recognizing the need to build a workforce as diverse as possible, global corporations began to think in different ways and to take serious steps to create a diverse, well-trained, and multicultural workforce. Faced with a decrease of general interest in science and engineering careers and an increase in demand for scientists and engineers, companies worldwide began to look beyond the traditional pool of talent (largely men) and target the other half of the population, women. To do this, companies implemented recruitment and retention strategies to increase the participation of women and minorities. Some of these included affinity groups (for women, minorities, people with different sexual orientations, and so on), mentoring programs, and career development seminars. Many of these are still highly successful.

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Women, Science, and Myth: Gender Beliefs from Antiquity to the Present
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Introduction vii
  • Chronological Section- Changes in Myths of Gender over Time 1
  • Antiquity 3
  • Medieval Era 17
  • Renaissance 31
  • The 18th Century 43
  • The 19th Century 61
  • Early 20th Century 79
  • Thematic Section- Concepts of Gender in Different Contexts 93
  • Disciplines - Chemistry 95
  • Physics/Astronomy 103
  • Mathematics 109
  • Computer Science 115
  • Biology 123
  • Psychology 129
  • Medicine 135
  • Technology 141
  • Aspects of Human Biology and Behavior - The Brain 149
  • Cognitive Abilities 155
  • Mental Illness 161
  • Personality/Rationality/Emotionality 167
  • Endocrinology and Hormones 173
  • Menstruation/Menopause/PMS 177
  • Early Modern Health 181
  • Gender/Sex—How Conjoined 187
  • Homosexuality 193
  • Race 201
  • Nature/Nurture 207
  • Institutions - Women’s Education 213
  • Motherhood 223
  • Religion 229
  • Universities 235
  • Federal Agencies 249
  • Industry 259
  • Professional Societies 263
  • Discrimination 273
  • Women Scientists as Leaders 283
  • Nobel Laureates 295
  • Gender and Occupational Interests 319
  • Other Perspectives on Gender and Myths and Beliefs in Scientific Research - Feminist Philosophy of Science 325
  • Biologists Who Study Gender/Feminism 337
  • Historians of Science and Technology Who Focus on Feminism 347
  • Primatologists Who Focus on Females/Gender 357
  • Critiques of Science 365
  • Marxism/Socialism and Feminism/Gender 373
  • Ecofeminism 381
  • Cyberfeminism 387
  • Race, Postcolonial Gender, and Science 393
  • Feminist Science Studies 399
  • Women’s Health Movement 405
  • Science Fiction 419
  • Conclusion 427
  • Appendix of- Statistical Tables 437
  • Glossary 445
  • Bibliography 469
  • Index 481
  • About the Editor 501
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