HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Main » General Discussion (Forum) » She Changed Astronomy For...

Tue Jul 27, 2021, 10:26 PM

She Changed Astronomy Forever. He Won the Nobel Prize For It.

Growing up in a Quaker household, Jocelyn Bell Burnell was raised to believe that she had as much right to an education as anyone else. But as a girl in the 1940s in Northern Ireland, her enthusiasm for the sciences was met with hostility from teachers and male students. Undeterred, she went on to study radio astronomy at Glasgow University, where she was the only woman in many of her classes.

In 1967, Burnell made a discovery that altered our perception of the universe. As a Ph.D. student at Cambridge University assisting the astronomer Anthony Hewish, she discovered pulsars — compact, spinning celestial objects that give off beams of radiation, like cosmic lighthouses. (A visualization of some early pulsar data is immortalized as the album art for Joy Division’s “Unknown Pleasures.”)

But as the short documentary above shows, the world wasn’t yet ready to accept that a breakthrough in astrophysics could have come from a young woman.

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/07/27/opinion/pulsars-jocelyn-bell-burnell-astronomy.html?action=click&module=Opinion&pgtype=Homepage

18 replies, 2402 views

Reply to this thread

Back to top Alert abuse

Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 18 replies Author Time Post
Reply She Changed Astronomy Forever. He Won the Nobel Prize For It. (Original post)
Demovictory9 Jul 2021 OP
canetoad Jul 2021 #1
yonder Jul 2021 #2
Docreed2003 Jul 2021 #3
niyad Jul 2021 #4
lapfog_1 Jul 2021 #5
Duppers Jul 2021 #6
cstanleytech Jul 2021 #12
littlemissmartypants Jul 2021 #13
SeattleVet Jul 2021 #15
cayugafalls Jul 2021 #7
StClone Jul 2021 #8
smirkymonkey Jul 2021 #9
Hekate Jul 2021 #10
Duppers Jul 2021 #11
Demovictory9 Jul 2021 #16
littlemissmartypants Jul 2021 #14
DBoon Jul 2021 #17
Demovictory9 Jul 2021 #18

Response to Demovictory9 (Original post)

Tue Jul 27, 2021, 10:34 PM

1. Kick

And off to the greatest.

Burnell is only one woman among many who did not receive her due recognition. And it's still going on.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Demovictory9 (Original post)

Tue Jul 27, 2021, 10:38 PM

2. K&R

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Demovictory9 (Original post)

Tue Jul 27, 2021, 10:44 PM

3. K&R

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Demovictory9 (Original post)

Tue Jul 27, 2021, 10:47 PM

4. KNR. Of course the male received the award. Misogyny and sexism in the sciences

is ubiquitous.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Demovictory9 (Original post)

Tue Jul 27, 2021, 10:51 PM

5. in my field of computer science

we have Ada Lovelace... the very first person to program a computer...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ada_Lovelace

and Rear Admiral Grace Murray Hopper... the inventor of COBOL and
a early computer pioneer... and one that I had the privilege of meeting and getting my very own "Hopper nanometer".

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grace_Hopper


and, of course,

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Katherine_Johnson

because of my time at NASA

Hats off to the giants of the industry on whose shoulders I stand, along with millions of others.

Long past time that we recognized the women who contributed so much.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to lapfog_1 (Reply #5)

Tue Jul 27, 2021, 11:25 PM

6. Hats off!





Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to lapfog_1 (Reply #5)

Tue Jul 27, 2021, 11:53 PM

12. I wish I was even half as smart as any of them were.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to lapfog_1 (Reply #5)

Wed Jul 28, 2021, 12:25 AM

13. These stories are everywhere and some of them we'll probably never hear about.

American Experience on PBS,

Elizebeth Friedman: Cryptanalyst Pioneer
Season 33 Episode 1

https://www.pbs.org/video/elizebeth-friedman-cryptanalyst-pioneer/

Her work was secret for decades and exploited by the patriarchy while she got no credit.

The Codebreaker reveals the fascinating story of Elizebeth Smith Friedman, the groundbreaking cryptanalyst whose painstaking work to decode thousands of messages for the U.S. government.

Based on the book The Woman Who Smashed Codes: A True Story of Love, Spies, and the Unlikely Heroine Who Outwitted America's Enemies.


We may truly never know what contributions women have made in academia, science, medicine, engineering ad infinitum because of the systematic sexism we continue to live under world wide.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to lapfog_1 (Reply #5)

Wed Jul 28, 2021, 12:56 AM

15. I got to meet Admiral Hopper twice...

once while she was still in the Navy, and the second time when she was a spokesperson for Digital Equipment Corporation.

I treasure my Grace Hopper 'nanoseconds' (I have 2 of them), and when she was working for DEC she was also handing out 'picoseconds', which I keep with my nanoseconds (it's a packet of ground black pepper).

What an amazing woman.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Demovictory9 (Original post)

Tue Jul 27, 2021, 11:33 PM

7. Unfortunately, this still holds true today. If you are an assistant doing research funded and under

a published scientist, they get first line credit.

She did get second line credit which is huge on a scientific paper for any assistant, especially one with an important discovery.

I am in no way minimalizing her contribution and discovery, just pointing out a fact that remains in place to this day.

My son is a research scholar and while his name does appear on the published papers, until he is the scientist at the lead he will never be first cited on the list, regardless of his contribution.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Demovictory9 (Original post)

Tue Jul 27, 2021, 11:35 PM

8. The name Bell and other cosmic coincidences!

I knew of Bell Burnell and her contributions as they were cited and recognized in several books I have read on physics and cosmology. What is interesting is the Big Bang was discovered at Bell Labs (no relation to Bell Burnell).

Though it involves two male scientists, it is as odd as Jocelyn's Bell Burnell snub was disturbing.

How things are discovered can be as interesting as what breakthroughs are found!


https://www.space.com/24784-big-bang-theory-five-weird-facts.html

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Demovictory9 (Original post)

Tue Jul 27, 2021, 11:40 PM

9. K&R

How many more thousands or even millions of stories are there like this throughout history that we will never ever know about?

How many men have taken the credit for the work of women? I think it is much more common than we can even imagine. In fact it's still going on today.

I am glad to see that women are finally, slowly getting the credit that is due to them for the many great contributions they have made to society (and which were stolen by men). We will never know the full extent of it, but every little revealation helps.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Demovictory9 (Original post)

Tue Jul 27, 2021, 11:41 PM

10. KnR

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Demovictory9 (Original post)

Tue Jul 27, 2021, 11:46 PM

11. There is some justice in the fact that Jocelyn...

..was finally awarded The Breakthrough Prize which rewarded her $3million!* She was the soul recipient! (They recognized the injustice.) The Nobel, although very prestigious comes with a $1.2 million award.

*But Jocelyn gave the $3million away to charity!

My dh knew Hewish during his 3yrs at Churchill College, Cambridge U. In his opinion, Hewish was a snot who wouldn't respond to correspondence regarding the head of the Cavendish Lab, who was a good friend of ours.



Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Duppers (Reply #11)

Wed Jul 28, 2021, 01:14 AM

16. good to know

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Demovictory9 (Original post)

Wed Jul 28, 2021, 12:31 AM

14. Kicked and recommended. ❤

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Demovictory9 (Original post)

Wed Jul 28, 2021, 04:28 PM

17. Similar story for Australian radio astronomy pioneer Ruby Payne-Scott

Along with Joseph Pawsey, she carried out the first radio astronomy experiment in the southern hemisphere at Sydney University, in 1944. [2] The following year she conducted pioneering solar radio astronomy observations at Dover Heights, near Bondi. Between 1945-47, Ruby helped discover three of five categories of solar bursts originating in the solar corona. She played a leading role in the design, construction, and use of a ‘swept lobe’ interferometer which enabled rapid imaging of the sun. Her most significant contribution was the development of the Fourier synthesis technique, giving radio astronomers a clearer understanding of space wave shape and frequency. Her method is still widely used today. [3]
...

Ruby married Bill Hall in 1944. Knowing she would legally be required to retire from the CSIRO, she kept their union hidden until 1950. When discovered, Ruby lost her permanent position and all her pension rights. She retired the following year at 39, pregnant with the first of two children. There was no such thing as maternity leave.


https://www.rahs.org.au/ruby-payne-scott-1912-1981/

Women were not allowed to work for the Australian government if they were married. She tried to get around this by keeping her marriage secret, but when finally caught she was forced to resign and had to relinquish her pension accumulated for the time she was married. This ended a very promising career in radio astronomy.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to DBoon (Reply #17)

Thu Jul 29, 2021, 11:38 AM

18. We have to shine a light on these stories

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Reply to this thread