This announcement is from the University of Hawaii:
A new book is out today, called “The Sky is for Everyone”. It features autobiographical stories from 37 women astronomers, including Ann Boesgaard. We have a UH News story posted about the book release, at
And the book is available today to order from most retailers.
Click on that web info, picture and quote. We are all so proud of Ann. What an honor, and what an honor for us to be able to call her our classmate.
Dramatic changes in social norms have taken place since the 1940s and 1950s when I was growing up. Men were breadwinners and women were homemakers and child-rearers. My father left when I was five, and my mother became a single parent long before the term was invented. After their divorce, our nuclear family consisted of me, my older sister, our mother, grandmother, and great aunt. We lived in a five-bedroom house in a middle-class neighborhood in Rochester, NY, thanks to the generosity of my mother’s mother. My mother, who was a math major at Vassar College, worked in the Controller’s Division of Eastman Kodak. That household of females sent a subtle message to me that women should not depend on men to support them.
Our public grade school was two blocks from home, and we walked to school in sunshine, rain and snow. All our teachers and the school principal were women. At that time few women worked outside the home, and those who did were primarily teachers, nurses, and secretaries.
In kindergarten, I learned the multiplication tables while rehearsing them with my sister as she was learning them in 3rd grade; I suspect this helped train the mathematical part of my developing brain. A weekly science program on then-new FM radio in 5th, 6th, and 7th grades stimulated the science part. Half-hour programs on specific topics were accompanied by questions to which we could discover the answers while listening. In addition we were given lists of activities to do; I always did all of them.
Around the age of seven I noticed adults asked little boys what they wanted to be when they grew up, but they asked little girls how many children they wanted to have! I became a feminist then without knowing the term. I resented that girls in grade school had to take sewing and cooking and that we had to give the boys the products of our cookie-making class.