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Title: Pure and practical women : mathematics, science and gender around 1900, with special reference to Grace Chisholm Young and Hertha Ayrton
Author: Jones, Claire Gwendoline
Awarding Body: University of Liverpool
Current Institution: University of Liverpool
Date of Award: 2005
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The decades around 1900 were a significant period in the construction of modern mathematics and science when many long-lasting assumptions about the nature of the disciplines, and their appropriateness for either gender, began to take root. It was also a time when Victorian notions of distinct male and female intellects were being increasingly challenged, not least by the movement for women's higher education and the accelerating campaign for suffrage. Explanations for the virtual absence of women's names from general histories of mathematics are often based on arguments centring on the innately masculine configuration of the discipline which made femininity and mathematics opposing terms. To be a mathematician was to be unwomanly and, conversely, manliness was manifested by success at mathematics. In science, explorations to recover female scientists and challenge an assumed lack of contribution by women have pointed to the increasing professionalisation and Darwinisation of science at the end of the nineteenth century. At this time, the rapid processes of institutionalisation combined with evolutionary arguments concerning women's lesser capacity for intellectual work to create a major barrier to women's participation. This has led some historians to lend a new importance to the domestic sphere and look for women scientists in the home, away from institutional contexts. This study aims to question and problematize both of these approaches.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available