Jessy Randall, Mathematics for Ladies: Poems on Women in Science, forthcoming September 2022 from Gold SF, an intersectional feminist science fiction imprint at Goldsmiths Press / University of London distributed by MIT. With a foreword by Pippa Goldschmidt and illustrations by Kristin DiVona of NASA's Reach Across the Stars project.

Pre-order from Amazon!



York County Senior College online presentation, February 23, 2022, 3 pm EST.

Colorado College "Irons in the Fire" online presentation, May 2021.

Normal Public Library "Poetry is Normal" illustrated online presentation, March 2021.



Thank you, Barbara Whitten, Colorado College Physics / Feminist and Gender Studies, for your 2015 talk on Sarah Frances Whiting, which was the seed for this series of poems.

Thank you, Rebecca Barnes, Colorado College Environmental Studies, for your ongoing work on women in science, particularly the Women in STEM Wikipedia Biographies project with CC students.

Thank you to everyone who suggested subjects for poems and/or helped in other ways: Marianne Reddin Aldrich, Melissa Penwell Belanger, Aage Bendiksen, Anna Primrose Bendiksen, Bruce Harris Bentzman, Janice Frankel Block, Amy Brooks, Ginna Brooks, Inge-Marie Eigsti, Paul Erickson, Darcy Falk, Celia Gresham, Jennifer Gresham, Nicole Gresham, Ross Gresham, Julie Grisham, Sarah Healy, Kris Kanthak, Anju Kanumalla, Terry Kind, Kathleen Kirk, Sandra Knauf, Rebecca Laroche, Lisa Lister, Phoebe Lostroh, Eva Lovell, Norah McCormick, Heather McHale, Sarah Milteer, Alexei Pavlenko, Katherine Randall, Jane Shuffelton, Alan Simon, Maxine Simon, Steve Simon, Dava Sobel, Robert Stoesen, Margaret Towers, David Weinstock, Anna Wermuth, Barbara Whitten, Dina Wood, Cindi Zenkert-Strange.

First Scientist (? - ?) in Analog
Pandrosion (ca. 300-360)
Hypatia (ca. 360-415)
Hildegard of Bingen (1098-1179)
Margaret Cavendish (1623-1673)
Maria Sibylla Merian (1647-1717)
Émilie du Châtelet (1706-1749) in Escape into Life
Laura Bassi (1711-1778)
Anna Morandi Manzolini (1716-1774)
Maria Gaetana, the Witch of Agnesi (1718-1799) in Redheaded Stepchild
Jane Colden (1724-1766)
Caroline Herschel (1750-1848) in Poetry Northwest
Wang Zhenyi (1769-1797) in Escape into Life
Marie Germain (1776-1831)
Mary Somerville (1780-1872)
James Miranda Barry / Margaret Ann Bulkley (ca. 1789-1865) in Escape into Life
Almira Hart Lincoln Phelps (1793-1884)
Mary Anning (1799-1847) in Escape into Life
Maria Mitchell (1818-1889) in Escape into Life
Eunice Newton Foote (1819-1888)
Elizabeth Blackwell (1821-1910) 1: Zuzu's Petals, Injecting Dreams into Cows; 2: LCRW; 3: Sendecki
Elizabeth Cabot Agassiz (1822-1907) in Scientific American
Rachel Bodley (1831-1888) in NAILED
Mary Treat (1830-1923) in Ethel
Rebecca Lee Crumpler (1831-1895) in Women's Review of Books
Elizabeth Garrett Anderson (1836-1917)
Josephine Cochrane (1839-1913)
Ellen H. Swallow Richards (1842-1911) Another Chicago Magazine
Emily Roebling (1803-1903) in Dreams and Nightmares
Sarah Frances Whiting (1847-1927)
Bertha Benz (1849-1944) in Lady Churchill's Rosebud Wristlet
Ellen Amanda Hayes (1851-1930) in Diode
Hertha Ayrton (1854-1923) in Analog plus online interview about the project
Elizabeth Lee Hazen (1855-1975)
Charlotte Angas Scott (1858-1931) in Escape into Life
Alice Eastwood (1859-1953) in Escape into Life
Alicia Boole Stott (1860-1940)
Nettie Stevens (1861-1912)
Henrietta Swan Leavitt (1868-1921)
Annie Jump Cannon (1863-1941) in Asimov's, Colorado Encyclopedia, and Dwarf Stars
Anna Wessels Williams (1863-1954) in NAILED
Susan La Flesche Picotte (1865-1950)
Marie Curie (1867-1934)
Mary Agnes Chase (1869-1963) in Strange Horizons (with audio)
Maud Slye (1869-1954) in Poetry Northwest
Ynes Mexia (1870-1938)
Lillian Gilbreth (1878-1972)
Lise Meitner (1878-1968) in NAILED
Agnes Arber (1879-1960) in Escape into Life
Emmy Noether (1882-1935)
Margaret Morse Nice (1883-1974) in NAILED
Libbie Henrietta Hyman (1888-1969) in Women's Review of Books
Alice Ball (1892-1916)
Hilda Geiringer von Mises (1893-1973) in Diode
Gerty Cori (1896-1957)
Joan Beauchamp Procter (1897-1931) in The Mom Egg
Rachel Fuller Brown (1898-1980)
Helen Taussig (1898-1986) in Asimov's
Charlotte Auerbach (1899-1994) in NAILED
Honor Fell (1900-1986) in Escape into Life
Cecilia Payne-Gaposchkin (1900-1979)
Nina Karlovna Bari (1901-1961) in Strange Horizons
Barbara McClintock (1902-1992)
Mina Rees (1902-1997)
Grace Brewster Murray Hopper (1906-1992)
Maria Goeppert Mayer (1906-1972) in NAILED
Bertha Parker Pallan (1907-1978)
Rachel Carson (1907-1964) in Lady Churchill's Rosebud Wristlet
Frances Hamerstrom (1907-1998) in Lady Churchill's Rosebud Wristlet
Mary G. Ross (1908-2008)
Virginia Apgar (1909-1974) in Diode
Rita Levi-Montalcini (1909-2012)
Laura Hunter Colwin (1911-2006) in Escape into Life
Elizabeth Hayes (1912-1984)
Chien-Shiung Wu (1912-1997) in Escape into Life
Dorothy Bernstein (1914-1988)
Frances Oldham Kelsey (1914-2015)
Rosalind Franklin (1920-1958)
Marie Tharp (1920-2006) in Women's Review of Books
Yvonne Choquet-Bruhat (b. 1923)
Jewel Isadora Plummer Cobb (1924-2017)
Evelyn Boyd Granville (b. 1924) in Pink Panther
Mary Ellen Rudin (1924-2013) in Escape into Life
Fay Ajzenberg-Selove (1926-2012) in Analog
Margaret Kivelson (b. 1928)
Helen Rodríguez-Trías (1920-2001)
Mildred Dresselhaus (1930-2017)
Jane Goodall (b. 1934) in Mobius: The Journal of Social Change
Roberta Eike (b. 1934)
Raye Montague (1935-2018) in Zocalo Public Square
Jocelyn Bell Burnell (b. 1943) in Another Chicago Magazine
Maryam Mirzakhani (1977-2017) in paper in Analog and online here

works consulted

Agassiz, Elizabeth C. and Alexander Agassiz. Seaside Studies in Natural History. Boston: Ticknor and Fields, 1865.
Ajzenberg-Selove, Fay. A Matter of Choices: Memoirs of a Female Physicist. New Brunswick: Rutgers University Press, 1994.
Blackwell, Elizabeth. Pioneer Work in Opening the Medical Profession to Women: Autobiographical Sketches. London: Longmans, Green, 1895.
Bodanis, David. Passionate Minds: The Great Love Affair of the Enlightenment, Featuring the Scientist Emilie Du Châtelet, the Poet Voltaire, Sword Fights, Book Burnings, Assorted Kings, Seditious Verse, and the Birth of the Modern World. New York: Crown, 2006.
Bruchac, Margaret M. Savage Kin: Indigenous Informants and American Anthropologists. Tucson: University of Arizona, 2018.
Byers, Nina and Gary Williams. Out of the Shadows: Contributions of Twentieth-Century Women to Physics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2006.
Clapp, Patricia. Dr. Elizabeth: The Story of the First Woman Doctor. New York: Lothrop, Lee and Shepard, 1974.
Crumpler, Rebecca. A Book of Medical Discourses. Boston: Cashman, Keating, 1883.
Deakin, Michael A.B. Hypatia of Alexandria: Mathematician and Martyr. Amherst, NY: Prometheus, 2007.
Felt, Hali. Soundings: The Story of the Remarkable Woman Who Mapped the Ocean Floor. New York: Picador, 2012.
des Jardins, Julie. The Madame Curie Complex: The Hidden History of Women in Science. New York: Feminist Press, 2010.
Frost, Winifred. "History of Mathematics: Pappus and the Pandrosion Puzzlement." Function (Monash University), Volume 16, part 3, June 1992, pages 88-91.
Holmes, Rachel. Scanty Particulars: The Scandalous Life and Astonishing Secret of Dr. James Barry. New York: Random House, 2002.
Ignatofsky, Rachel. Women in Science: 50 Fearless Pioneers Who Changed the World. Berkeley, CA: Ten Speed Press, 2016.
Iqbal, Saima S. "Louis Agassiz, Under a Microscope," Harvard Crimson, March 18, 2021.
Koblitz, Ann Hibner. "A Biographical Sketch" given at the Legacy of Sofya Kovalevskaya symposium, Radcliffe College, 1985.
Lee, Jane J. “6 Women Scientists Who Were Snubbed Due to SexismNational Geographic News, May 19, 2013.
Lyusternik, L.A. “The Early Years of the Moscow Mathematical School.” Russian Mathematical Surveys, Vol. 22, Issue 4, August 1967.
Miller, Lulu. Why Fish Don't Exist: A Story of Loss, Love, and the Hidden Order of Life. New York: Simon and Schuster, 2020.
Nimura, Janice. The Doctors Blackwell: How Two Sisters Brought Medicine to Women - and Women to Medicine. New York: Norton, 2021.
Ottaviani, Jim. Dignifying Science: Stories about Women Scientists. Illustrated by Donna Barr, Stephanie Gladden, Roberta Gregory, Lea Hernandez, Carla Speed McNeil, Linda Medley, Marie Severin, Jen Sorensen, and Anne Timmons, with covers by Ramona Fradon and Mary Fleener. Graphic non-fiction. Ann Arbor, MI : G.T. Labs, 2003.
Polo-Blanco, Irene. “Alicia Boole Stott, a Geometer in Higher Dimension.” Historia Mathematica, Volume 35, Issue 2, May 2008, pages 123-139.
Richards, Ellen Swallow. Chemistry of Cooking and Cleaning. Boston: Home Science Publishing Co., 1897, c. 1881.
Riedel, Samantha. “James Barry Is Not Your Rorschach Testthem., February 19, 2019.
Rossiter, Margaret W. Women Scientists in America: Before Affirmative Action, 1940-1972. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1995.
Rossiter, Margaret W. Women Scientists in America: Struggles and Strategies to 1940. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press,, 1982.
Sample, Ian. "British Astrophysicist Overlooked by Nobels Wins $3M Award for Pulsar Work." The Guardian, September 6, 2018.
Sobel, Dava. The Glass Universe: How the Ladies of the Harvard Observatory Took the Measure of the Stars. New York: Viking, 2016.
Swaby, Rachel. Headstrong: 52 Women Who Changed Science – and the World. New York: Broadway Books, 2015.
Swaby, Rachel. Trailblazers: 33 Women in Science Who Changed the World. New York: Delacorte Press, 2016.
Tsjeng, Zing. Forgotten Women: The Scientists. London: Cassell, 2018.
Whiting, Sarah Frances. Daytime and Evening Exercises in Astronomy, for Schools and Colleges. Boston: Ginn, 1912.
Winick, Stephen. “She Sells Seashells and Mary Anning: Metafolklore with a Twist.” Folklife Today: American Folklife Center and the Veterans History Project, Library of Congress, July 26, 2017.
Women in Chemistry and Physics: A Biobibliographic Sourcebook. Ed. Louise S. Grinstein, Rose K. Rose, and Miriam H. Rafailovich. Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press, 1993.
Women in the Biological Sciences: A Biobibliographic Sourcebook. Ed. Louise S. Grinstein, Carol A. Biermann, Rose K. Rose. Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press, 1997.
Women of Mathematics: A Biobibliographic Sourcebook. Ed. Louise S. Grinstein and Paul J. Campbell. New York: Greenwood, 1987.

selected novels and films

Mary Anning: Chevalier, Tracy. Remarkable Creatures. New York: Penguin, 2016. Kessel, John. Pride and Prometheus. New York: Simon & Schuster, 2010. Thomas, Joan. Curiosity: A Love Story. Toronto: McClelland & Stewart, 2010. 2020 film Ammonite.
James Miranda Barry: Levy, E.J. The Cape Doctor: A Novel. New York: Little, Brown, 2021.
Marie Curie: Redniss, Lauren. Radioactive: Marie & Pierre Curie: A Tale of Love and Fallout. New York: HarperCollins, 2016. Graphic novel. Adapted into the 2019 film Radioactive
Mary Treat: Kingsolver, Barbara. Unsheltered: A Novel. New York: HarperCollins, 2018.