Women and the Scientific Field

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AP Euro- 2
1 November, 2011
Women and the Scientific Field
During the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries women were inferior of the two sexes, they were expected only to take care of the household, raise a child, cook, take care of their husband, and any other jobs that were suitable to them. However as time passed many women became interested in other fields of study such as chemistry, astronomy, biology, botany, physics, and medicine. During the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries women began to break the social norm as they ventured into the world of sciences, and these women were met with a variety of conflicting attitudes; both positive and negative; some people were completely against it, some men supported it, and some women supported their sex by proving themselves in their respective fields of study. Those who were against women who actively participated in scientific research were often men but also included other women. Up until then, men were nearly always seen as the dominant figure in society as opposed to women. Johann Theodor Jablonski, secretary to the Berlin Academy of Sciences, said in a letter to the Academy that he didn't believe that Maria Winkelmann should continue to work on their calendar of observations because the Academy was ridiculed for having a woman prepare its calendar (Doc 8). The men cared about what others thought of their academy and how they ran it; more so, men were embarrassed of women doing the things that men usually did. Also, when women did participate in scientific meetings and discussions, they were often met with discrimination and inequity. Samuel Pepys, an English diarist, said that when the Duchess of Newcastle was invited to a meeting of the Royal Society of Scientists, she dressed so antiquely and her behavior was so ordinary that he did not like her at all, and she did not say anything worth hearing (Doc 3). Although, Men were not the only ones who did not believe that women should study science. Marie...
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