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International Women's Day (pg. 2)

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Elizabeth Blackwell (1821 - 1910) :: Woman in Science

Elizabeth applied to 29 medical schools before she was finally accepted to one in New York. She graduated at the top of her class and became the first female doctor in America. Unfortunately, her career had an early setback when, while treating an infant, she contracted an infection. As a result, she lost [kwlink]an eye[/kwlink]. Her career was not over though. She opened her own hospital and charged her patients very little or nothing at all.

Marie Curie (1867 - 1934) :: Woman in Science

Marie Curie is one of the first female scientists to have worldwide fame and is the most famous woman in physics. She won two Nobel Prizes - one for physics in 1903 and one for chemistry in 1911. Her fame came from her discovery of the element radium. What made her famous also killed her - Marie Curie died from overexposure to the radioactive element.

Dian Fossey (1932 - 1985) :: Woman in Science

After a trip to Africa, Dian felt compelled to return and live for 18 years among the gorillas. She was the first person to have voluntary contact with a gorilla after one of them touched her hand. Thanks to her work with the mountain gorillas, we know a lot more about their behavior and relationship to humans. While living in Africa, Dian was murdered in her cabin. Her death is still unsolved, although many believe she was murdered by the gorilla poachers she opposed.

Elsie MacGill (1905 - 1980) :: Woman in Science

Dr. Elsie MacGill was the first woman in North America to get a degree in aeronautical engineering. During World War II, she was responsible for production of the Hawker Hurricane fighter plane which she adapted for flying in cold weather. Elsie MacGill also designed the Maple Leaf Trainer for the Canadian Car and Foundry Company, making her the first woman to design an aircraft.

Joan Ganz Cooney (1929 - present) :: Woman in the Arts

Without this woman, kids around the world would never have known Big Bird, Oscar the Grouch or Elmo. She's the driving force behind Sesame Street, as well as the network it aired on, The Children's Television Workshop.

George Sand (1804 - 1876) :: Woman in the Arts

George Sand was the pen name of Romantic writer Amandine Aurore Lucile Dupin. She was also sometimes known as Baronne Dudevant. By Romantic, we don't mean Harlequin romance novels; we mean the French romantic movement. George's novels were feminist in nature and filled with social criticism (particularly regarding the poor). Her writings promoted free love and criticized marriage (not a very popular position for a woman of that time). George's irregular life (she dressed as a man) and many love affairs shocked Parisian society.

Simone de Beauvoir (1908 - 1986) :: Woman in the Arts

Talk about girl power! A French novelist and philosopher, her novel The Second Sex is one of the most widely read pieces of feminist literature in the world. However, Simone didn't become actively involved in the feminist movement until the 1960s, when she began to speak out about women's rights, especially issues like abortion and violence against women.

Georgia O'Keeffe (1887 - 1986) :: Woman in the Arts

As hard as it is to break out as an artist today, imagine what it was like for young women a hundred years ago! Georgia O'Keeffe proved it was possible for women to succeed as artists and be recognized for their work. Georgia even continued to paint after she lost her sight at the age of 84. She received the Medal of Freedom from the US government in 1977 and the National Medal of Arts in 1985.

  • For more women who made a difference in history, click here.
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