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Celebrating the legacy of inspirational female academics

Posted on 15/04/2011

Student dissecting in 1914: Courtesy of Royal Holloway archives

Royal Holloway, University of London, is launching a Women in Research lecture series focusing on the contribution that female academics have made to research.

Hosted by Professor Edith Hall, each Wednesday evening for six weeks from 27 April an academic from the departments of History, Physics, Geography, Classics, English and Management will take to the floor to talk about another woman in her field that inspired her, highlighting their contribution to research and how it influenced her own work - from an unconventional Islamic scholar to a palaeontologist that discovered pygmy hippo remains in Cyprus and helped shape the debate on climate change.

The talks will be both educational and inspiring and are in celebration of Bedford College and Royal Holloway College's tradition of support for women's education. The series will begin with Professor Danielle Schreve, from the Department of Geography from 6.15pm in the Windsor Building Auditorium.

Professor Schreve is a palaeontologist, whose research is focused on understanding the Ice Age history of the European mammal fauna, in particular studying patterns of evolution and extinction, past environments and early human-faunal interactions. As well as leading new fieldwork excavations, she is also actively engaged in promoting public understanding of science and has recently appeared on Radio 4’s In Our Time with Melvyn Bragg and Channel 4’s The Birth of Britain with Tony Robinson.

She will speak about Dorothea Bate FGS [Fellow of the Geological Society of London] (1878 – 1951), one of the first women to make a scientific career in natural history and palaeontology.  From her earliest interests in the Ice Age fossils of the Wye valley caves, Dorothea became an intrepid explorer.  Some of her most notable work was undertaken in the Mediterranean, where she documented remarkable dwarf elephant and hippopotamus fossils and related these to island isolation and climate change, thereby setting the foundations for understanding biological responses to environmental change.

Below is a list of the remaining lectures in the series:  

Professor Annemarie Schimmel Lecture

“she was an outstanding scholar of the Islamic world whose work on Sufism and Sindh inspired me personally as a historian”

Wednesday 4 May 2011, 6.00pm

Management Auditorium

History: Dr Sarah Ansari

Professor Persis Drell Lecture

“Now Director of the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, she was my mentor when I was a PhD student”

Wednesday 11 May 2011, 6.00pm

Management Auditorium

Physics: Dr Veronique Boisvert

Professor Carol Gilligan Lecture

"her work, which is the foundation of the Ethics of Care, has provided much-needed balance in my research and teaching on business ethics"

Wednesday 18 May 2011, 6.00pm

Management Auditorium

Management: Dr Laura J Spence

Elizabeth Carter Lecture

“one of the first Blue Stockings, she was a pioneering scholar who encouraged women to aim higher and supported their endeavours through informal intellectual networks”

Wednesday 25 May 2011, 6.00pm

Management Auditorium

English: Professor Judith Hawley

Professor Emeritus Froma Zeitlin Lecture

'She is a brilliant and charismatic Classicist who has published groundbreaking studies of Greek literature, theatre, and society'

Wednesday 1 June 2011, 6.00pm

Management Auditorium

Classics: Professor Edith Hall

The lecturers are free and are open to the public. Please confirm your attendance by emailing Celia Mulderrig to secure seating.

The lectures will be followed by a reception of drinks and canapés.



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