Smithsonian Institution Libraries

Women in Science and Technology

Selected Bibliography

Women's History Month

In 1987, Congress designated March as Women's History Month. Each year the Smithsonian Institution observes Women's History Month by selecting a theme and offering a month-long calendar of programs and events. "An Extraordinary Century for Women - Now Imagine the Future," the theme for 2000 recognizes the modern progress of women and the expanded opportunities that progress brings. This bibliography, compiled and published by the Smithsonian Institution Libraries (SIL), is dedicated to the history of women in the fields of science and technology. Included below are historical examinations of both the evolution of women's roles and their contributions to technology, as well as, information and debate on how far women have come in the current technological movement. Topics range from agriculture and anthropology, to medicine and the Internet, to political science and philanthropy. All of the books are current and were published after 1986. For further information on these selections, the entire Smithsonian Institution bibliographic catalog may be accessed and searched at

**Asterisks indicate featured publications of keynote speakers to the Smithsonian Institution's Women's History Month opening event "Wired Women - Issues of Marketing and Difference Using the Internet," March 2, 2000. See the Smithsonian Institution's Women's History Month Home Page for more of this year's events.

Ajzenberg-Selove, Fay. A matter of choices : memoirs of a female physicist. New Brunswick, N.J. : Rutgers University Press, 1994.
The autobiography of Fay Ajzenberg-Selove. Her mother was a Polish mezzo-soprano; her father was a mining engineer from St. Petersberg, Russia; Ajzenberg-Selove went on to become a noted physicist in the study of nuclear spectroscopy of light elements.

Bailey, Martha J. American women in science : 1950 to the present : a biographical dictionary. Santa Barbara, Calif. : ABC-CLIO, 1998.

Baldwin, Louis. Women of strength : biographies of 106 who have excelled in traditionally male fields, 61 A.D. to the present. Jefferson, N.C. : McFarland, 1996.

Berry, Dawn Bradley. The 50 most influential women in American law. Los Angeles : Lowell House ; Chicago: Contemporary Books, 1996.

Bindocci, Cynthia Gay. Women and Technology : An Annotated Bibliography. New York : Garland Publishing, 1993.
This volume was compiled for the purposes of research on the integration of women and the socio-cultural aspects of technology. The articles, books, published conference proceedings, and dissertations are all selected from secondary works published in English from 1979 through 1991.

**Cherny, Lynn, and Weise, Elizabeth Reba, eds. Wired women : gender and new realities in cyberspace. Seattle, Wash. : Seal Press, 1996.
"Written by women who know their Net culture from the inside, Wired Women is an excellent collection, an immensely entertaining read, and a candid look at the state of gender relations in cyberspace." ~Howard Rheingold, author of The Virtual Community.

Claassen, Cheryl. Women in archaeology. Philadelphia : University of Pennsylvania Press, 1994.
A sociological approach to the professionalization of women in archaeology. Biographical information of early women archaeologists is studied, and then surveyed, highlighting how gender influences the making of an archaeologist.

Eiff, Mary Ann. A descriptive study of the differences in career choice dynamics among male and female aviation flight students. Master's thesis, Southern Illinois University, 1991.
A Masters in Education research paper from the Southern Illinois University at Carbondale. This comparison study surveys at a grass roots level the factors involved in determining why, or if, a woman chooses a nontraditional career in aviation.

Felder, Deborah G. A century of women : the most influential events in twentieth-century women's history. Secaucus, N.J. : Carol Pub. Group, 1999.

Henderson, Helen Kreider, and Hansen, Ellen, eds. Gender and agricultural development : surveying the field. Tucson : University of Arizona Press, 1995.
A review of literature compiled to address the role of Third World rural women in agricultural development at a local level, and the impact their work can have on a national level. Henderson provides an extensive bibliography, including sources that offer "a historical overview of the evolution of thought on issues concerning women and development from the 1970's to the present."

Henrion, Claudia. Women in mathematics : the addition of difference. Bloomington : Indiana University Press, 1997.

Hildenbrand, Suzanne. Women's collections : libraries, archives, and consciousness. New York : Haworth Press, 1986.

Kirkup, Gill, and Keller, Laurie Smith, eds.. Inventing women : science, technology, and gender. Cambridge, Mass. : B. Blackwell, 1992.
This volume addresses how science "mostly done by men" seeks to define women in selective ways. How do notions about gender affect science and technology? How do women benefit from these notions? Inventing Women is a collection of feminist debates that seek to define what technology is, and its relationship to science and gender at the physiological, anthropological, medical, and genetic levels.

Kwolek-Folland, Angel. Incorporating women : a history of women and business in the United States. New York : Twayne Publishers, 1998.
Kwolek-Folland's narrative is a scholarly history of the women's business experience from the nineteenth to twentieth centuries. Editor Kenneth Liparito poses the question in his foreword: "Does business have the same meaning for women as it does for men?" Incorporating Women answers that question showing how women have historically brought values beyond those of profit and individual success to their business enterprises.

Longino, Helen E. Science as social knowledge : values and objectivity in scientific inquiry. Princeton, N.J. : Princeton University Press, 1990.
"....An analysis of research programs that have drawn criticism from feminists. Longino examines theories of human evolution and of prenatal hormonal determination of "gender-role" behavior, of sex differences in cognition, and of sexual orientation, the author shows how assumptions laden with social values affect the description, presentation, and interpretation of data. In particular, Longino argues that research on the hormonal basis of "sex-differentiated behavior" involves assumptions not only about gender relations but also about human action and agency."

Matthews, Glenna. The rise of public woman : woman's power and woman's place in the United States, 1630-1970 . New York : Oxford University Press, 1992.

McCarthy, Kathleen D. Lady bountiful revisited : women, philanthropy, and power. New Brunswick, N.J. : Rutgers University Press, 1990.
A collection of essays about the history of women's voluntarism efforts of the twentieth century. The essays explore how women's philanthropic endeavors have allowed them to access power in realms outside of customary feminine stereotypes.

McIlwee, Judith Samson. Women in engineering : gender, power, and workplace culture. Albany : State University of New York Press, 1992.
A study based on data from questionnaires and interviews, examining the backgrounds, family lives, work experiences, and attitudes of women who became engineers in the 1970s and 1980s.

Morse, Mary. Women changing science : voices from a field in transition. New York : Insight Books, 1995.

National Research Council (U.S)--Committee on Women in Science and Engineering. Women scientists and engineers employed in industry : why so few? : a report based on a conference. Washington, D.C. : National Academy Press, 1994.

New viewpoints in women's history : working papers from the Schlesinger Library 50th anniversary conference, March 4-5, 1994 . Cambridge, Mass. : Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America, Radcliffe College, [1994]
A collection of "new viewpoints" on women's history and gender studies. This volume, the fruit of the Schlesinger Library's 50th anniversary conference, includes contributions from scholars at various stages in their careers from graduate students to retired historians. The research is scholarly and committed to the preservation of women's history.

**Pack, Ellen. Women's wire web directory. Emeryville, Calif. : Lycos Press, 1997.
"Women's Wire Web Directory offers a comprehensive and descriptive listing of the best Web sites and informational resources for women. The book also offers a practical advice on using technology, networking with organizations and support groups, and exploring business and career opportunities. - Easy to use directory of the best Web sites and online information for women-demystifies using the Web to locate resources of interest to women." ~Lycos Press.

Rayner-Canham, Marelene F. & Rayner-Canham, Geoffrey. Women in chemistry : their changing roles from alchemical times to the mid-twentieth century. Washington, D.C. : American Chemical Society : Chemical Heritage Foundation, 1998.
A complete historical account of women chemists from the beginning of recorded history to 1950. Each biography is contextualized into a cultural framework of the period to give a more complete scientific overview of history. See how women were able to make considerable contributions to the field of chemistry in spite of the prejudices of their times.

Russo, Carolyn. Women and flight : portraits of contemporary women pilots. Boston : Bulfinch Press/Little, Brown, 1997.
Biographies of thirty-six of today's most fascinating women pilots, from a crop duster to astronaut. The stories are entertaining, and the photographic portraits are at once handsome and attractive. Russo's book is a fine tribute to the accomplishments of contemporary women in aviation.

Schiebinger, Londa L. The mind has no sex? : women in the origins of modern science. Cambridge, Mass. : Harvard University Press, 1989.
"Schiebinger examines the important role of women in 17th- and 18th-century science, and their gradual exclusion from intellectual pursuits into the Victorian era. She discusses the rise of new ideas of sexual differences, the changing image of the feminine, and the influence of gender on knowledge and power. A scholarly work, with 75 pages of notes and bibliography." ~Book News, Inc. Portland, Ore.

Searing, Susan E. The history of women and science, health, and technology : a bibliographic guide to the professions and the disciplines. Madison, WI: University of Wisconsin System, Women's Studies Librarian, 1993.
A basic, but solid, bibliography compiled by women scholars about women in the fields of science, health, and technology. Contemporary works as well as historical writings are cited. This bibliography reaches a wide audience and serves as a good reference for curriculum development, professional reading, and student research.

Stanley, Autumn. Mothers and daughters of invention : notes for a revised history of technology. Metuchen, N.J. : Scarecrow Press, 1993.
This massive volume traces women's inventions worldwide in major areas of technology--agriculture, medicine, reproduction, machines, and computers--from prehistory foreword. For bibliography-buffs, the 125-page reference section is quite impressive.

Terry, Jennifer. Processed lives : gender and technology in everyday life. London ; New York : Routledge, 1997.
"The essential question in this book [asks]: who actually benefits from technology, and why? Processed Lives analyzes the interrelations of gender and technology. It considers how the terms of gender are embodied in technologies and, conversely, how technologies shape our notions of gender. The contributors explore the complex territory between the lust for technology and the fear of technology, commenting particularly on the ambivalence women experience in relation to machines."

Daria Wingreen
Smithsonian Institution Libraries
March, 2000

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Last updated: 04/28/2010 11:17:27