Apparently this is how women become big in my field…
I work in a visual cognition lab. We were talking about a female postdoc in the lab becoming “a big professor” in the field someday and the (older, male) PI immediately started telling us about another woman in the field who is currently “a big professor” in the sense that she’s pregnant. Because what do you call a woman who’s big in a STEM field? Pregnant! Our PI is a very funny man.
From Naomi Rachel
Last spring at The Conference of World Affairs, three female NASA scientists talked about their hate mail and death threats related to their work on global warming. I was horrified and amazed. Then I encountered similar hatred for a minor issue. We are avid backpackers and visit Canyonlands and Arches National Parks several times a year. Last Spring, I noted that the new superintendent at Canyonlands had many of the educational signs about the importance of biological soil crust removed. Arches had signage that Canyonlands did not and as a result, people were walking off trail and creating mini dust storms by trampling the soil crust. I wrote a letter to the superintendent but he did not respond. Last Fall Break we were there again and saw more damage. This time I decided to write a letter to the editor and submit it to several publications in Utah. I received a great deal of hate mail. I was accused of being ” an over educated liberal female” and some writers even checked out my university courses and commented on them. I was amazed because my topic was benign and certainly not as controversial or important as global warming. I am convinced that if my name had not identified me as a female with a PhD, my pro education, mild comments would not have elicited such negative responses.