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November 7

Compiled and Written by Irene Stuber
who is solely responsible for its content.
This document has been taken from emailed versions
of Women of Achievement. The complete episode
will be published here in the future.

Marie Sklodowska Curie, Physicist


QUOTE by Sigmund Freud.

The First Person to Win the Nobel Prize Twice

      Born Nov. 7, 1867, Marie Sklodowska Curie, Polish-French physicist whose work with radium and other materials made her the first person to win the Nobel prizes twice.
      The mother of two daughters, including Irene who also won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry, Mme. Curie was the first female lecturer and professor at Sorbonne. She had degrees in mathematics and physics. During World War I in France, with the assistance of her daughter Irene, MC perfected the new medical diagnostic tool "X radiography." She learned to drive a car, acquainted herself with auto mechanics, and toured actual battlefields to personally install mobile X-ray equipment that served as many as one million soldiers.
      Pierre Curie, Marie's husband who shared the first of the two Nobel prizes won by Marie was offered France's Legion of Honor, its highest honor for winning the Nobel. But he refused it because it was not awarded jointly with his wife who was instrumental in the discovery of radium. Pierre died in 1905. Marie won her second Nobel in 1911.
      In 1921, Marie Curie was given a gram of radium valued at $250,000 by members of the American Asociation of University Women (AAUW) who held a special fundraiser. Curie was too poor to buy it herself even after winning TWO Nobel Prizes. France NEVER paid her tribute even with a modern laboratory.

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B. 11-07-1847, Lotta Crabtree, taught by the legendary Lola Montez, she was the rage of the English and American stage, leaving a fortune of $4 million.

B. 11-07-1878, Lise Meitner, Austrian physicist, during her research in Germany and Austria with Otto Hahn and Fritz Strassman strange results with uranium led to the discovery of uranium fission in 1938. She then proved mathematically that atoms could be split - one of the great scientific discoveries of the century - while she was fleeing Nazi Germany and to settle in Sweden where she continued her research.
      Her detailing of the theory of splitting the uranium atom led to the A-bomb and is the basis of atomic energy. Meitner is gradually being recognized as the true parent of the atomic age. She was the first woman to receive the Ernrico Fermi Award (1966). Oddly enough she worked for the Nobel Institute in Sweden in her later years and never received full credit for her outstanding work.

B. 11-07-1893, Margaret Kernochan Leech, author and historian, Pulitzer prize winner for Reveille in Washington, 1860-1865 (1941) and In the Days of McKinley (1959).

B. 11-07-1901, Cecilia Meireles, Brazilian poet, teacher, and journalist. Known for her lyrical poetry.

B. 11-07-1917, Helen Gavronsky Suzman, spoke out against arpartheid when elected to the South African parliament in 1953.

Event 11-07-1922, Grace F. Kaercher, becomes the first woman in Minnesota history to be elected to a statewide office, that of clerk of the state supreme court.

B. 11-07-1926, Joan Sutherland, Australian opera singer considered to have one of the greatest bel canto voices in herstory, best known for her remarkable vocalizing in Donizetti's Lucia di Lammermoor.

B. 11-07-1936, Audrey McLaughlin, named leader of Canada's New Democratic Party in 1989, Yukon representative to Canada's parliament.

B. 11-07-1937, Mary Travers, author, composer, singer, of Peter, Paul, and Mary fame.

Event 11-07-1942, Dorothy Edith Lorne Tuttle, enlisted as the first member of the Coast Guard Women's Reserve (SPARS).

B. 11-07-1943, Joni Mitchell, singer, composer. Day After Day. Grammy award winner as best folk performer of 1970.

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      "Despite my 30 years of research into the feminine soul, I have not yet been able to answer... the great question that has never been answered: What does a woman want?"
            -- Sigmund Freud; quoted by Dr. Ernest Jones, The Life and Works of Sigmund Freud, Vol.2.
      (Question: Did he EVER ask that question of women who weren't already driven insane/mad/neurotic/psychotic by the restrictions on their lives under the strict patriarchal society of Freud's time?)

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