Women in film
Women in film describes the role of women as film directors, cinematographers, film producers, film critics, other film industry professions. The work of women in film criticism and scholarship, including feminist film theorists, is described. Women have statistically underrepresented in creative positions in the film industry. Most English-language academic study and media coverage focuses on the issue within the US film industry, however inequalities exist in other countries; this underrepresentation has been called the "celluloid ceiling", a variant on the employment discrimination term "glass ceiling". Women have always had a presence in film acting, but have been underrepresented, on average less well paid. On the other hand, many key roles in filmmaking were for many decades done entirely by men, such as directors and cinematographers. In modern times, women have made contributions to many of these fields; the 2013 Celluloid Ceiling Report conducted by the Center for the Study of Women in Television and Film at San Diego State University collected a list of statistics gathered from "2,813 individuals employed by the 250 top domestic grossing films of 2012."Women accounted for... "18% of all directors, executive producers, writers and editors.
This reflected no change from 2011 and only a 1% increase from 1998." "9% of all directors." "15% of writers." "25% of all producers." "20% of all editors." "2% of all cinematographers." "38% of films employed 0 or 1 woman in the roles considered, 23% employed 2 women, 28% employed 3 to 5 women, 10% employed 6 to 9 women."A New York Times article stated that only 15% of the top films in 2013 had women for a lead acting role. The author of the study noted that, "The percentage of female speaking roles has not increased much since the 1940s, when they hovered around 25 percent to 28 percent." "Since 1998, women’s representation in behind-the-scenes roles other than directing has gone up just 1 percent." Women "...directed the same percent of the 250 top-grossing films in 2012 as they did in 1998."In 2015, Forbes reported that "...just 21 of the 100 top-grossing films of 2014 featured a female lead or co-lead, while only 28.1% of characters in 100 top-grossing films were female... This means it’s much rarer for women to get the sort of blockbuster role which would warrant the massive backend deals many male counterparts demand".
In the U. S. there is an "industry-wide in salaries of all scales. On average, white women get paid 78 cents to every dollar a white man makes, while Hispanic women earn 56 cents to a white male’s dollar, Black women 64 cents and Native American women just 59 cents to that." Forbes' analysis of US acting salaries in 2013 determined that the "...men on Forbes’ list of top-paid actors for that year made 2½ times as much money as the top-paid actresses. That means that Hollywood's best-compensated actresses made just 40 cents for every dollar that the best-compensated men made." Studies have shown that "...age and gender discrimination can yield an more significant wage gap." Young women actresses tend to make more than young male actors. However, "older actors make more than their female equals" in age, with "female movie stars mak the most money on average per film at age 34, while male stars earn the most at 51." According to actress Jennifer Lawrence, "...women negotiating for higher pay worry about seeming'difficult' or'spoiled.'"
2019 Update According to the Study of Women in Television and Film at San Diego State University, male characters continued to control on the big screen in 2018. - about only 35% of films contained 10 or more female characters in dialogue roles today, - about 82% had 10 or more male characters in speaking roles, unfair. It has only increase 1 percentage point from 34% since 2017; the percentage of highest grossing films featuring female protagonists increased to 31% in 2018 but before it was 37% in 2017. This shows how Women in Media are being seeing less. -Black females increased from 16% in 2017 to 21% in 2018 - Latinas decreased from 7% in 2017 to 4% in 2018 - Asian females increased from 7% in 2017 to 10% in 2018. Women's cinema film directors and, to a lesser degree, the work of other women behind the camera such as cinematographers and screenwriters. Although the work of women film editors, costume designers, production designers is not considered to be decisive enough to justify the term "women's cinema", it does have a large influence on the visual impression of any movie.
Some of the most distinguished women directors have tried to avoid the association with women's cinema in the fear of marginalization and ideological controversy. Alice Guy-Blaché made the first narrative film La Fée aux Choux in 1896. In Sweden, Anna Hofman-Uddgren debuted as the first female film director when she produced the silent film Stockholmsfrestelser in 1911. Lois Weber was a successful film director of the silent era. Women screenwriters included Anita Loos and June Mathis. In the 1920s, large banks assumed control of Hollywood production companies. Dorothy Arzner was the only woman filmmaker in this era. Germaine Dulac was a leading member of the French avant-garde film movement after World War I and Maya Deren did experimental cinema. Shirley Clarke was an independent American filmmaker in the 1950s; the National Film Board of Canada allowed many women to produce non-commercial films. Joyce Wieland was a Canadian experimental film maker. Early feminist films focused on personal experiences.
Wanda by Barbara Loden is a portrait of alienation. Resisting the oppressi
Women in punk rock
Women have made significant contributions to punk rock music and its subculture since its inception in the 1970s. In contrast to the rock music and heavy metal scenes of the 1970s, which were dominated by men, the anarchic, counter-cultural mindset of the punk scene in mid-and-late 1970s encouraged women to participate; this participation played a role in the historical development of punk music in the U. S. and U. K. at that time, continues to influence and enable future generations. Women have participated in the punk scene as lead singers, instrumentalists, as all-female bands, zine contributors and fashion designers. Rock historian Helen Reddington wrote that the popular image of young punk women musicians as focused on the fashion aspects of the scene was stereotypical, she states that many, if not all women punks were more interested in the ideology and socio-political implications, rather than the fashion. Music historian Caroline Coon contends that before punk, women in rock music were invisible.
It wasn’t combative, but compatible." Chrissie Hynde echoed similar sentiments when discussing her start in the punk scene, "That was the beauty of the punk thing: discrimination didn't exist in that scene." The anti-establishment stance of punk opened the space for women who were treated like outsiders in a male-dominated industry. Sonic Youth's Kim Gordon states, "I think women are natural anarchists, because you're always operating in a male framework." Others take issue with the notion of equal recognition, such as guitarist Viv Albertine, who stated that "the A&R men, the bouncers, the sound mixers, no one took us seriously.. So, no, we got no respect anywhere. People just didn't want us around." Musicologist Caroline Polk O'Meara has written that female experience and taking a pro-woman stance empowered women's participation in punk rock beginning in the 1970's. In popular music, there has been a gendered "distinction between public and private participation" in music. "everal scholars have argued that men exclude women from bands or from the bands' rehearsals, recordings and other social activities."
"Women are regarded as passive and private consumers of slick, prefabricated – hence, inferior – pop music... excluding them from participating as high status rock musicians." One of the reasons that mixed gender bands were traditionally rare was that "bands operate as tight-knit units in which homosocial solidarity – social bonds between people of the same sex... – plays a crucial role." In the 1960s pop music scene, "inging was sometimes an acceptable pastime for a girl, but playing an instrument...simply wasn't done." Punk rock is more of a subculture than a popular genre of music, why women were drawn to it beginning in the late 1970s. In the UK, the Sex Discrimination Act of 1975 allowed women the same access to jobs as men. Many men thought that this legislation put them at a loss and felt that women were taking away positions that traditionally belonged to men. This, the election of Margaret Thatcher, led many young women who felt disenfranchised to the up-and-coming punk rock music scene.
Artists like Suzi Quatro are considered to be major influences in the early British punk culture. Quatro refused to be sexualized by the media and indirectly dealt with the issue of sexism by embracing a tough, rocker persona while producing music that could thrive in the mainstream. Bands like X-ray Spex and The Slits took this feminist rock culture and combined it with a more two-fisted style of music; this genre reflected on social and political changes of the United Kingdom at the time, continued to do so in other locations. In the US, women such as Exene Cervenka, Joan Jett and Alice Bag made contributions to the Los Angeles punk scene in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Cervenka's aggressive style and her non-conventional looks drew more young women to the scene since it was inclusive. Many of these women sought to fight public sexual harassment and encourage body-positive attitudes through their music. Leather jackets, short skirts and choker necklaces were part of the punk style and culture.
This style made many punk women targets for sexual harassment in the streets. They spent much time outside waiting for shows and meeting with one another, which created a kind of vulnerability. Women punk musicians retaliated by educating the young girls involved in the scene, taking legal action, writing songs on the matter. While punk in New York and San Francisco emerged in the 1970s, the Los Angeles scene was arguably at its strongest point in the eighties, as a response to the conservative push for a more moral America by Ronald Reagan’s administration. Mainstream rock such as Christopher Cross or Hall and Oates did not tend to address political issues, which left a space for rebels like Joan Jett and Blondie within the charts; the feminist ideologies of punk rock in the 1970s and 1980s persevered into the 1990s via the Riot Grrrl movement in the Washington D. C. area. Riot Grrrl addressed more than the sexism of punk culture alone. Rather, the movement applied feminism on a broader scale by taking on issues such as sexual assault, systematic sexism, the idea that sex is taboo for women.
Riot Grrrl began by utilizing homemade magazines, known as zines, group meetings. The movement developed into a genre of music, more ag
Women in telegraphy
Women in telegraphy have been evident since the 1840s. The introduction of practical systems of telegraphy in the 1840s led to the creation of a new occupational category, the telegrapher, telegraphist or telegraph operator. Duties of the telegrapher included sending and receiving telegraphic messages, known as telegrams, using a variety of signaling systems, routing of trains for the railroads. While telegraphy is viewed as a males-only occupation, women were employed as telegraph operators from its earliest days. Telegraphy was one of the first communications technology occupations open to women. Demonstration of a successful system for sending telegraphic messages by Samuel F. B. Morse in 1844 led to the development of a telegraphic network in the eastern United States and maintained by a number of private companies. Operation of this network required skilled operators at each station, capable of sending and receiving messages in Morse code; the shortage of qualified operators led to the hiring of women as well as men to fill a growing need for operators in the late 1840s as the telegraph spread across the country.
Sarah Bagley, a women's rights advocate and founder of the Lowell Female Labor Reform Association, became the telegraph operator for Francis Ormand Jonathan Smith's New York and Boston Magnetic Telegraph Company in Lowell, Massachusetts, in 1846. She became aware of the telegraph and its potential from her previous work as an editor for the reform newspaper, the Voice of Industry. Phoebe Wood, sister of Morse's associate Ezra Cornell and wife of telegraph entrepreneur Martin B. Wood, became the telegrapher in Albion, Michigan, in 1849, after Cornell's business partner John James Speed pointed out the need for operators in sparsely populated frontier areas. Used to transmit personal messages, business transactions and news reports, the telegraph began to be used for train routing by the railroads as well in the 1850s. Elizabeth Cogley of Lewistown, became one of the earliest women to work as a railroad telegrapher when she was hired by the Pennsylvania Railroad in 1855; the employment of women in the telegraph industry in the United States increased during the American Civil War as male telegraphers were drafted or joined the U.
S. Military Telegraph Corps of the Union army. A few women served in the Military Telegraph Corps. Louisa Volker, the telegraph operator at Mineral Point, provided important information on troop movements in her role as Military Telegrapher. After the war, as men returned from the military and competition for jobs arose, male operators began to question the suitability of placing women operators in the telegraph office, the issue was hotly debated in the telegraph journals. However, when Western Union, the largest telegraph company, opened a telegraph school for women at Cooper Union in 1869 and began to employ large numbers of women at lower wages than their male counterparts, the continued presence of women in the industry was assured. According to the U. S. Census, the percentage of telegraphers who were women in the U. S. grew from four percent in 1870 to twenty percent in 1920. Telegraph service in Canada was provided both by private companies and the Government Telegraph Service. In Toronto in 1902, 42 percent of the operators at the Great Northwestern Telegraph Company were women.
At the offices of the Canadian Pacific Railway in the same city, 28 percent of the operators were female in 1902. The percentage of the workforce, female was somewhat lower in western Canada. In 1917, 18 percent of the operators in Winnipeg were women. During the First World War, employment on "the Home Front" included. Many telegraphers from the United States came to Mexico to work for the railroads during the administration of Porfirio Diaz, including several American women. Abbie Struble Vaughan worked for the Mexican National Railroad and the Mexican Central Railroad from 1891 to 1911. Women began to work for a number of private telegraph companies in England in the 1850s, including the Electric Telegraph Company; the Telegraph School for Women was established in London in 1860. The Queen's Institute for the Training and Employment of Educated Women began classes in telegraphy in Dublin in 1862. Telegraphers in England used the Wheatstone-Cooke system of telegraphy as well as Morse code for transmission of messages.
The number of women employed as telegraphists increased after the telegraph service was taken over by the British Post Office in 1870. In most of Europe, the telegraph service came under the control of the government posts and telegraph administration; the telegraph administrations of Switzerland and the Scandinavian countries first began to employ women as telegraph operators in the 1850s. A French telegrapher, Juliette Dodu, became a heroine of the Franco-Prussian War of 1870 when she reputedly tapped the telegraph lines being used by the Prussian military and passed the information to French military forces. By 1880, 230 of the 624 telegraphers at the Paris Central Telegraphique, or 37 percent, were
Though women artists have been involved in the making of art throughout history, their work, when compared to that of their male counterparts, is both overlooked and undervalued. Prevailing stereotypes about the sexes have caused certain media, such as textile or fiber arts, to be associated with women, despite having once been categories both men and women participated in. Additionally, art forms that have gained this distinction are, as in the case of both textile and fabric arts, demoted to categories like "arts and crafts", rather than fine art. Women in art have been faced with challenges due to gender biases in the mainstream fine art world, they have encountered difficulties in training and trading their work, as well as gaining recognition. Beginning in the late 1960s and 1970s, feminist artists and art historians created a Feminist art movement that overtly addresses the role of women in the art world and explores the role of women in art history and in society. There are no records of who the artists of the prehistoric eras were, but studies of many early ethnographers and cultural anthropologists indicate that women were the principal artisans in Neolithic cultures, in which they created pottery, baskets, painted surfaces and jewelry.
Collaboration on large projects was typical. Extrapolation to the artwork and skills of the Paleolithic era suggests that these cultures followed similar patterns. Cave paintings of this era have human hand prints, 75% of which are identifiable as women's. "For about three thousand years, the women – and only the women – of Mithila have been making devotional paintings of the gods and goddesses of the Hindu pantheon. It is no exaggeration to say that this art is the expression of the most genuine aspect of Indian civilization." The earliest records of western cultures mention specific individuals, although women are depicted in all of the art and some are shown laboring as artists. Ancient references by Homer and Virgil mention the prominent roles of women in textiles, poetry and other cultural activities, without discussion of individual artists. Among the earliest European historical records concerning individual artists is that of Pliny the Elder, who wrote about a number of Greek women who were painters, including Helena of Egypt, daughter of Timon of Egypt, Some modern critics posit that Alexander Mosaic might not have been the work of Philoxenus, but of Helena of Egypt.
One of the few named women painters who might have worked in Ancient Greece, she was reputed to have produced a painting of the battle of Issus which hung in the Temple of Peace during the time of Vespasian. Other women include Timarete, Kalypso, Aristarete and Olympias. While only some of their work survives, in Ancient Greek pottery there is a caputi hydria in the Torno Collection in Milan, it is attribute to the Leningrad painter from c. 460–450 BCE and shows women working alongside men in a workshop where both painted vases. Artists from the Medieval period include Claricia, Ende, Herrade of Landsberg and Hildegard of Bingen. In the early Medieval period, women worked alongside men. Manuscript illuminations and carved capitals from the period demonstrate examples of women at work in these arts. Documents show that they were brewers, wool merchants, iron mongers. Artists of the time period, including women, were from a small subset of society whose status allowed them freedom from these more strenuous types of work.
Women artists were of two literate classes, either wealthy aristocratic women or nuns. Women in the former category created embroideries and textiles. There were a number of embroidery workshops in England at the time at Canterbury and Winchester, it is presumed that women were entirely responsible for this production. One of the most famous embroideries of the Medieval period is the Bayeux Tapestry, embroidered with wool and is 230 feet long, its images narrate the Norman Conquest of England. The Bayeux Tapestry may have been created in either a commercial workshop by a royal or an aristocratic lady and her retinue, or in a workshop in a nunnery. In the 14th century, a royal workshop is documented, based at the Tower of London, there may have been other earlier arrangements. Manuscript illumination affords us many of the named artists of the Medieval Period including Ende, a 10th-century Spanish nun; these women, many more unnamed illuminators, benefited from the nature of convents as the major loci of learning for women in the period and the most tenable option for intellectuals among them.
In many parts of Europe, with the Gregorian Reforms of the 11th century and the rise in feudalism, women faced many strictures that they did not face in the Early Medieval period. With these societal changes, the status of the convent changed. In the British Isles, the Norman Conquest marked the beginning of the gradual decline of the convent as a seat of learning and a place where women could gain power. Convents were made subsidiary to male abbots, rather than being headed by an abbess, as they had been previously. In Pagan Scandinavia the only confirmed female runemaster, worked in the 11th century. In Germany, under the Ottonian Dynasty, convents retained their position as institutions of learning; this might be because convents were headed and populated by unmarried women from royal
Women's suffrage is the right of women to vote in elections. Beginning in the late 1800s, women worked for broad-based economic and political equality and for social reforms, sought to change voting laws in order to allow them to vote. National and international organizations formed to coordinate efforts to gain voting rights the International Woman Suffrage Alliance, worked for equal civil rights for women. Women who owned property gained the right to vote in the Isle of Man in 1881, in 1893, the British colony of New Zealand granted all women the right to vote. Most independent countries enacted women's suffrage in the interwar era, including Canada in 1917. Leslie Hume argues that the First World War changed the popular mood: The women's contribution to the war effort challenged the notion of women's physical and mental inferiority and made it more difficult to maintain that women were, both by constitution and temperament, unfit to vote. If women could work in munitions factories, it seemed both ungrateful and illogical to deny them a place in the polling booth.
But the vote was much more than a reward for war work. Extended political campaigns by women and their supporters have been necessary to gain legislation or constitutional amendments for women's suffrage. In many countries, limited suffrage for women was granted before universal suffrage for men; the United Nations encouraged women's suffrage in the years following World War II, the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women identifies it as a basic right with 189 countries being parties to this Convention. In ancient Athens cited as the birthplace of democracy, only adult, male citizens who owned land were permitted to vote. Through subsequent centuries, Europe was ruled by monarchs, though various forms of parliament arose at different times; the high rank ascribed to abbesses within the Catholic Church permitted some women the right to sit and vote at national assemblies – as with various high-ranking abbesses in Medieval Germany, who were ranked among the independent princes of the empire.
Their Protestant successors enjoyed the same privilege into modern times. Marie Guyart, a French nun who worked with the First Nations peoples of Canada during the seventeenth century, wrote in 1654 regarding the suffrage practices of Iroquois women, "These female chieftains are women of standing amongst the savages, they have a deciding vote in the councils, they make decisions there like the men, it is they who delegated the first ambassadors to discuss peace." The Iroquois, like many First Nations peoples in North America, had a matrilineal kinship system. Property and descent were passed through the female line. Women elders could depose them; the emergence of modern democracy began with male citizens obtaining the right to vote in advance of female citizens, except in the Kingdom of Hawai'i, where universal manhood and women's suffrage was introduced in 1840. In Sweden, conditional women's suffrage was in effect during the Age of Liberty. Other possible contenders for first "country" to grant women suffrage include the Corsican Republic, the Pitcairn Islands, the Isle of Man, Franceville, but some of these operated only as independent states and others were not independent.
In 1756, Lydia Taft became the first legal woman voter in colonial America. This occurred under British rule in the Massachusetts Colony. In a New England town meeting in Uxbridge, she voted on at least three occasions. Unmarried white women who owned property could vote in New Jersey from 1776 to 1807. In the 1792 elections in Sierra Leone a new British colony, all heads of household could vote and one-third were ethnic African women; the female descendants of the Bounty mutineers who lived on Pitcairn Islands could vote from 1838. This right was transferred; the seed for the first Woman's Rights Convention in the United States in Seneca Falls, New York was planted in 1840, when Elizabeth Cady Stanton met Lucretia Mott at the World Anti-Slavery Convention in London. The conference refused to seat Mott and other women delegates from the U. S. because of their sex. In 1851, Stanton met temperance worker Susan B. Anthony, shortly the two would be joined in the long struggle to secure the vote for women in the U.
S. In 1868 Anthony encouraged working women from the printing and sewing trades in New York, who were excluded from men's trade unions, to form Working Women's Associations; as a delegate to the National Labor Congress in 1868, Anthony persuaded the committee on female labor to call for votes for women and equal pay for equal work. The men at the conference deleted the reference to the vote. In the U. S. women in the Wyoming Territory could vote as of 1869. Subsequent American suffrage groups disagreed on tactics, with the National American Woman Suffrage Association arguing for a state-by-state campaign and the National Woman's Party focusing on an amendment to the U. S. Constitution. In 1881 the Isle of Man, an internally self-governing dependent territory of the British Crown, enfranchised women property owners. With this it provide
Women's history is the study of the role that women have played in history and the methods required to do so. It includes the study of the history of the growth of woman's rights throughout recorded history, personal achievement over a period of time, the examination of individual and groups of women of historical significance, the effect that historical events have had on women. Inherent in the study of women's history is the belief that more traditional recordings of history have minimized or ignored the contributions of women to different fields and the effect that historical events had on women as a whole; the main centers of scholarship have been the United States and Britain, where second-wave feminist historians, influenced by the new approaches promoted by social history, led the way. As activists in women's liberation and analyzing the oppression and inequalities they experienced as women, they believed it imperative to learn about the lives of their fore mothers—and found little scholarship in print.
History was written by men and about men's activities in the public sphere in Africa—war, politics and administration. Women are excluded and, when mentioned, are portrayed in sex-stereotypical roles such as wives, mothers and mistresses; the study of history is value-laden in regard to what is considered "worthy." Other aspects of this area of study is the differences in women's lives caused by race, economic status, social status, various other aspects of society. Changes came in the 20th centuries. Women traditionally ran the household and reared the children, were nurses, wives, neighbours and teachers. During periods of war, women were drafted into the labor market to undertake work, traditionally restricted to men. Following the wars, they invariably lost their jobs in industry and had to return to domestic and service roles; the history of Scottish women in the late 19th century and early 20th century was not developed as a field of study until the 1980s. In addition, most work on women before 1700 has been published since 1980.
Several studies have taken a biographical approach, but other work has drawn on the insights from research elsewhere to examine such issues as work, religion and images of women. Scholars are uncovering women's voices in their letters, memoirs and court records; because of the late development of the field, much recent work has been recuperative, but the insights of gender history, both in other countries and in Scottish history after 1700, are being used to frame the questions that are asked. Future work should contribute both to a reinterpretation of the current narratives of Scottish history and to a deepening of the complexity of the history of women in late medieval and early modern Britain and Europe. In Ireland studies of women, gender relationships more had been rare before 1990. French historians have taken a unique approach: there has been an extensive scholarship in women's and gender history despite the lack of women's and gender study programs or departments at the university level.
But approaches used by other academics in the research of broadly based social histories have been applied to the field of women's history as well. The high level of research and publication in women's and gender history is due to the high interest within French society; the structural discrimination in academia against the subject of gender history in France is changing due to the increase in international studies following the formation of the European Union, more French scholars seeking appointments outside Europe. Before the 19th century, young women lived under the economic and disciplinary authority of their fathers until they married and passed under the control of their husbands. In order to secure a satisfactory marriage, a woman needed to bring a substantial dowry. In the wealthier families, daughters received their dowry from their families, whereas the poorer women needed to work in order to save their wages so as to improve their chances to wed. Under the German laws, women had property rights over their dowries and inheritances, a valuable benefit as high mortality rates resulted in successive marriages.
Before 1789, the majority of women lived confined to the home. The Age of Reason did not bring much more for women: men, including Enlightenment aficionados, believed that women were destined to be principally wives and mothers. Within the educated classes, there was the belief that women needed to be sufficiently educated to be intelligent and agreeable interlocutors to their husbands. However, the lower-class women were expected to be economically productive in order to help their husbands make ends meet. In the newly founded German State, women of all social classes were politically and disenfranchised; the code of social respectability confined upper class and bourgeois women to their homes. They were considered and economically inferior to their husbands; the unmarried women were ridiculed, the ones who wanted to avoid social descent could work as unpaid housekeepers living with relatives. A significant number of middle-class families became impoverished between 1871 and 1890 as the pace of industrial growth was uncertain, women had to earn money in secret by sewing or embroidery to contribute to the family income.
Women in science
Women have made significant contributions to science from the earliest times. Historians with an interest in gender and science have illuminated the scientific endeavors and accomplishments of women, the barriers they have faced, the strategies implemented to have their work peer-reviewed and accepted in major scientific journals and other publications; the historical and sociological study of these issues has become an academic discipline in its own right. The involvement of women in the field of medicine occurred in several early civilizations, the study of natural philosophy in ancient Greece was open to women. Women contributed to the proto-science of alchemy in the first or second centuries AD. During the Middle Ages, convents were an important place of education for women, some of these communities provided opportunities for women to contribute to scholarly research. While the eleventh century saw the emergence of the first universities, women were, for the most part, excluded from university education.
The attitude to educating women in medical fields in Italy appears to have been more liberal than in other places. The first known woman to earn a university chair in a scientific field of studies, was eighteenth-century Italian scientist, Laura Bassi. Although gender roles were defined in the eighteenth century, women experienced great advances in science. During the nineteenth century, women were excluded from most formal scientific education, but they began to be admitted into learned societies during this period. In the nineteenth century, the rise of the women's college provided jobs for women scientists and opportunities for education. Marie Curie, a physicist and chemist who conducted pioneering research on radioactive decay, was the first woman to receive a Nobel Prize in Physics and became the first person to receive a second Nobel Prize in Chemistry. Forty women have been awarded the Nobel Prize between 1901 and 2010. Seventeen women have been awarded the Nobel Prize in physics, physiology or medicine.
In the 1970s and 1980s although many books and articles about women scientists were appearing all of the published sources ignored women of color and women outside of Europe and North America. One of the few exceptions was Derek Richter's 1982 book about women scientists; the formation of the Kovalevskaia Fund in 1985 and the Organization for Women in Science for the Developing World in 1993 gave more visibility to marginalized women scientists, but today there is a dearth of information about current and historical women in science in developing countries. According to Ann Hibner Koblitz, Most work on women scientists has focused on the personalities and scientific subcultures of Western Europe and North America, historians of women in science have implicitly or explicitly assumed that the observations made for those regions will hold true for the rest of the world. Koblitz has said that these generalizations about women in science do not hold up cross-culturally. For example, A scientific or technical field that might be considered'unwomanly' in one country in a given period may enjoy the participation of many women in a different historical period or in another country.
An example is engineering, which in many countries is considered the exclusive domain of men in prestigious subfields such as electrical or mechanical engineering. There are exceptions to this, however. In the former Soviet Union all subspecialties of engineering had high percentages of women, at the Universidad Nacional de Ingeniería of Nicaragua, women made up 70% of engineering students in 1990; the involvement of women in the field of medicine has been recorded in several early civilizations. An ancient Egyptian, Merit-Ptah, described in an inscription as "chief physician", is the earliest known female scientist named in the history of science. Agamede was cited by Homer as a healer in ancient Greece before the Trojan War. Agnodike was the first female physician to practice in fourth century BC Athens; the study of natural philosophy in ancient Greece was open to women. Recorded examples include Aglaonike. A passage in Pollux speaks about those who invented the process of coining money mentioning Pheidon and Demodike from Cyme, wife of the Phrygian king and daughter of King Agamemnon of Cyme.
Tradition recounts that a daughter of a certain Agamemnon, king of Aeolian Cyme, married a Phrygian king called Midas. This link may have facilitated the Greeks "borrowing" their alphabet from the Phrygians because the Phrygian letter shapes are closest to the inscriptions from Aeolis. During the period of the Babylonian civilization, around 1200 B. C. two perfumeresses named Tapputi-Belatekallim and -ninu were able to obtain the essences from plants by using extraction and distillation procedures. If we are to argue chemistry as the use of chemical equipment and processes we can identify these two women as the first chemists. During the time of the Egyptian dynasty, women were involved in applied chemistry, such as the making of beer and the preparation of medicinal compounds. A good number of women have been recorded to have made major contributions to alchemy. Many of which lived in Alexandria around the 1st or 2nd centuries AD, where the gnostic tradition led to female contributions being valued.
The most famous of the women alchemist, Mary the Jewess, is credited with inventing several chemical instruments, including the double boiler.