Researching science is a difficult scientific discipline, requiring the researcher certain skills and creativity. For female scientists, this is even more difficult as they face many difficulties and social prejudices about research and learning. Even so, many of them have won the Nobel Prize, a prestigious award that scientists all want. Let’s learn about the female scientists who have won the Nobel Prize in history through the content of this blog.
1. Why are there so few women who have ever won a Nobel Prize?
Since its establishment in 1901, the Nobel Prize – a global symbol of intelligence, has only been awarded to 17 women in the fields of science. This number only accounts for 3% of the number of winners, why?
According to psychiatrist Christophe André, there are three main reasons for this. The first is the obstacle of subjective distinctions, but quite common in society since ancient times, always ranking women second after men and often preventing them from getting into science. Although girls have more and more access to the world of science, it will still be a few generations before they can reach higher rates on par with men in science or politics.
The second reason is the stereotype of women in the eyes of men, which cannot completely disappear in the world. A 2015 survey found that 67% of men believe that women are not smart enough to be top scientists.
What is most worrying, however, is the third and implicit barrier – women’s own subjective ideas about their roles, leading most of them to limit themselves and withdraw from fields such as science and politics.
2. Female scientists who won Nobel prizes in history
2.1. Marie Curie
She is a Polish-French physicist and chemist, known for her pioneering research on radioactivity. In 1903 she was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics along with her husband Pierre Curie and scientist Henri Becquerel for their research on radiation. She is the first woman to receive this award. In 1911, she received the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for the discovery of the two chemical elements radium and polonium.
She was the first person honored to receive two Nobel Prizes in two different fields: physics and chemistry.
2.2. Gerty Theresa Cori
Gerty Theresa Cori is a Jewish-American biochemist. In 1947, along with her husband Carl Ferdinand Cori, she was awarded the Nobel Prize in Medicine for discovering how glycogen is broken down and resynthesized for use as an energy source in the body. Previously, in 1929, the two jointly proposed a theory called the Cori cycle, which explains the movement of energy in the body from muscle tissue to the liver and back to muscle tissue.
She was the first American woman to win a Nobel Prize. Her image was also honored to appear on American postage stamps. At the same time, her name was given to a crater on the moon – the crater Cori.