It seems that the participation of women in science is recent. However, the leading women in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math for short) have always been there.
The Woman Post | Carolina Rodríguez Monclou
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These are some of the most important representatives of these disciplines throughout history.
Science, as we know it today, was born out of natural philosophy. It has its roots in ancient Greek and Egyptian philosophies. Its evolution to its current form may be marked by important social transformations such as the Renaissance and the Industrial Revolution in Europe. Let's take a look at the women scientists who have made remarkable discoveries throughout history.
1. Peseshet (Egypt, 2500 BC)
There was a body of female doctors in Ancient Egypt during the Old Kingdom, and Mrs. Peseshet was its director. Women in Egyptian society enjoyed a social and professional status like men. All professions were open to the education of men and women, including the priesthood, management, business, and medicine, among other fields. The contemporary problem of excluding women, especially from the professions, did not exist in Ancient Egypt. She is the first recorded scientist in history.
2. Tapputi (Babylonian Mesopotamia, 1200 BC)
Tapputi is possibly the first recorded chemist in history. According to SciShow, she worked as a perfumer and was known for producing exceptional quality perfumes. Making a good perfume is a very technical process, and in ancient Babylon scents and other fragrant substances were held in high regard.
3. Trota of Salerno (Italy, 12th century)
For International Day of Women and Girls in Science, here is a fun cartoon about Trota of Salerno, a medical practitioner in the Italian town of Salerno, early 12thC. Want to learn more? https://t.co/0XsglYHeFG @WomenScienceDay #WomenInScience #WomenScienceDay. credit: @CountDvL pic.twitter.com/ehl9gXItVD— Monica H Green, PhD (@monicaMedHist) February 11, 2018
Trota of Salerno lived in the Middle Ages and worked as a gynecologist. In a time when science was a man's thing, Trota excelled in the field of medicine. The medical writer was one of the best-known women of the famous Schola Medica Salernitana, a secular institution that admitted women. She had innovative ideas about birth control and methods to reduce labor pain. She specialized in women's medicine and wrote several treatises.
4. Margherita Sarrocchi (Italy, 17th century)
She was a 17th-century poet and philosopher who was part of two prestigious academies where she exchanged ideas with other scientists and artists such as Galileo Galilei. She wrote epic poems, although few were published, according to historians.
5. Mary Anning (England, 1799 - 1847)
She was the first recognized paleontologist to make essential discoveries about prehistoric repetitions. Her work was instrumental in the 19th-century changes in science, the history of the earth, and prehistoric life. According to New Scientists," paleontologist Mary Anning found some of the earliest known fossils of ancient animals such as ichthyosaurs, plesiosaurs, and pterosaurs before the term dinosaur was invented."
The incursion of women in science is not a recent issue but from many years ago. Her contributions and her brilliant minds have made great strides for humanity with her discoveries. These were some of the most prominent female scientists who made important discoveries throughout history.