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History of Geology

History of Geology

What rocks tell and how we came to understand it

The Sciences

Geologizing Women into the Field!

Geology usually requires outdoor activities in remote, inhospitable, hazardous or dirty environments. At the beginning of the 19th century it was hard to imagine that a gentleman would engage voluntarily in such an activity and it's seemed even less comprehensible that a woman could and should be allowed to do the same thing!As results of these social prejudices throughout history women geologists have encountered difficulties travelling to their field locations or working in the field.Girls and women working in the field were tolerated in the social lower classes, like professional fossil collector and dealer Mary Anning (1799-1847) of Lyme Regis (Dorset), daughter of a craftsman, but for upper-class women engaging in field research was almost impossible.Women could minimize these "problems" by collecting fossils and studying rocks in their local environment, for example on private property or in the surroundings of their home, where their social status was known and such behaviour regarded as eccentricity and somehow tolerated...

March 8, 2012 — David Bressan

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