Category Archives: Gender Equality

“If you want to be successful, you have to be fast. But you also have to be first.”

Quanta Magazine: Three Major Physics Discoveries and Counting. “Sau Lan Wu spent decades working to establish the Standard Model of particle physics. Now she’s searching for what lies beyond it.”

“In 1963, Maria Goeppert Mayer won the Nobel Prize in physics for describing the layered, shell-like structures of atomic nuclei. No woman has won since.

One of the many women who, in a different world, might have won the physics prize in the intervening 55 years is Sau Lan Wu. Wu is the Enrico Fermi Distinguished Professor of Physics at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, and an experimentalist at CERN, the laboratory near Geneva that houses the Large Hadron Collider. Wu’s name appears on more than 1,000 papers in high-energy physics, and she has contributed to a half-dozen of the most important experiments in her field over the past 50 years. She has even realized the improbable goal she set for herself as a young researcher: to make at least three major discoveries.

Wu was an integral member of one of the two groups that observed the J/psi particle, which heralded the existence of a fourth kind of quark, now called the charm. […] Later in the 1970s, Wu did much of the math and analysis to discern the three “jets” of energy flying away from particle collisions that signaled the existence of gluons — particles that mediate the strong force holding protons and neutrons together. […] Wu later became one of the group leaders for the ATLAS experiment, one of the two collaborations at the Large Hadron Collider that discovered the Higgs boson in 2012, filling in the final piece of the Standard Model.”

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“Look what you made me do.”

The New Yorker: The Language of the Trump Administration Is the Language of Domestic Violence. By Jessica Winter, June 11, 2018.

Look what you made me do has emerged as the dominant ethos of the current White House. During the 2016 Presidential race, many observers drew parallels between the language of abusers and that of Trump on the campaign trail. Since his election, members of the Trump Administration have learned that language, too, and nowhere is this more vivid than in the rhetoric they use to discuss the Administration’s policies toward the Central American immigrants crossing the U.S. border. Informally since last summer, and officially since April 6th, the Department of Homeland Security has been separating parents from their children at the border, taking the parents into criminal custody and handing the children over to the Department of Health and Human Services to be placed in shelters and foster families, sometimes thousands of miles away from their parents. The process is compounded in its brutality by its perhaps intentional disorder, as a Boston Globe piece detailed on Sunday: parents in custody often have no idea where their children are, how to get them back, or if or when they will see them again.

[…]

There has always been a sickening intimacy to Trump’s insults and cruelties, whether he was sexualizing his daughter or sexually humiliating and physically dominating Hillary Clinton during the second Presidential debate. For many observers, especially women, that debate—coming days after the release of the “Access Hollywood” tape—triggered a fight-or-flight response, unleashing their own memories of harassment and abuse. And, for many observers, especially parents, the news coverage of the atrocities being committed at the border in the name of American prosperity and security triggers a similar physiological response—except that this time the trigger is instantiated by sadistic, totalitarian force. (I cannot be the only mother of small children who slept on the floor of her kids’ room the night that “All In with Chris Hayes” reported on a baby seized from his parents, one week past his first birthday.) A slow, quiet terror continues to spread through the American populace. We are all being made into complicit bystanders in Trump’s violence. We are all members of Trump’s toxic, traumatizing family now.”

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“As a queer black woman, I’m among the last people anyone expects to see on a through-hike. But nature is a place I’ve always belonged.”

Outside: Going it alone. By Rahawa Haile, April 11, 2017.

“What happens when an African American woman decides to solo-hike the Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine during a summer of bitter political upheaval? Everything you can imagine, from scary moments of racism to new friendships to soaring epiphanies about the timeless value of America’s most storied trekking route.”

Buzzfeed: How Black Books Lit My Way Along The Appalachian Trail. By Rahawa Haile, February 2, 2017.

“I can confirm that one does not walk 2,000 miles across the face of this country as a black woman without building up an incredible sense of self.”

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“Die Gleichberechtigung liegt ihr am Herzen”

Die Zeit: Frances McDormand: Die Unerschrockene. “Ungeschminkt und unabhängig: Frances McDormand zeigt, wie Hollywood aussehen könnte, wenn Frauen nur für ihre schauspielerische Leistung beurteilt würden.” Von Barbara Schweizerhof.

“Bei allen Verleihungen, egal wie glamourös sie waren, erschien die Schauspielerin fast ungeschminkt, die kurzen, grauen Haare nur nachlässig in Fasson gebracht, und in Kleidern, die in Form und Farbe das Gegenteil von dem waren, was man figurbetont oder sexy nennt. Wenn die Kamera während ihrer Dankesreden prominente Gesichter im Publikum zeigte, wurde der Kontrast noch deutlicher: Jessica Chastain, Sally Hawkins oder Carey Mulligan, Meryl Streep, Margot Robbie oder Emma Stone, alle mit sorgfältig aufgelegtem Fest-Make-up, Dekolletés und Glitzerlook, wirkten fast wie artige Püppchen gegenüber dieser Frau, die unerschrocken ihr Alter zeigt und schon vor Langem aufgehört hat, im herkömmlichen Sinn gefallen zu wollen.”