February 8, 2016

Bios of famous male scientists had they been female scientists


Previously, we wrote about #realacademicbios—a trending hashtag that caused a stir in the Twitter circles of academia after Eva Mrozcek, an assistant professor of religious studies at UC Davis, tweeted: “Tradition of (mostly male) scholars who describe idyllic life w/wife &kids in academic bio needs to be supplemented w/ #realacademicbios.”

Now, a woman in Spain is exposing sexism inherent in the way biographies of notable female scientists are written. Tweeting under the handle @Daurmith, she caused a “small brouhaha” when she started writing 140 character bios of famous male scientists as they would have been written had they been women. As reported by Kelly Oakes at Buzzfeed, the reworked bios took issue with the focus on marital status and appearance in the biographies of female scientists.

Daurmith, who chose to remain anonymous, told Buzzfeed:

I got to thinking about that and about all the other times I’ve seen articles written about notable women in which their looks/makeup secrets/wardrobe advice were discussed, sometimes instead of—not besides—her work. I wrote the bios as an exercise ‘through the glass’, so to speak. I find it productive, and a bit cathartic, to use women’s tropes on men, à la Hawkeye Project.

Check out her Tweets below:




Ena Brdjanovic was formerly Director of Digital Media at Melville House.