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Hidden Figures - COMmon Read 2017-2018  

Last Updated: Nov 8, 2017 URL: http://libguides.marin.edu/hiddenfigures Print Guide

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African Americans in Mathematics Classrooms

"Cutting one way, these stories [such as Hidden Figures] do assist in deconstructing the White male math myth discourse—mathematics is not just for White (and Asian) boys and men. Cutting the other way, however, these histories too often become the 'exception story,' so to speak," David W. Stinton. Please see PDF below for entire article, which is from the December 2016 issue of Journal of Urban Mathematics Education.


Miriam Mann

Image of Miriam Mann

"It was Miriam Mann who finally decided it was too much to take. 'There’s my sign for today,' she would say upon entering the cafeteria, spying the placard designating their table in the back of the room. Not even five feet tall, her feet just grazing the floor when she sat down, Miriam Mann had a personality as outsized as she was tiny." (Shetterly, Hidden Figures, Chapter 5).


Professors See Charlottesville as a Starting Point for Discussions on Race

"Students aren’t always comfortable talking about race, especially at the beginning of the semester in a classroom led by a professor they don’t know yet. But this semester..."  From "The Chronicle of Higher Education."

Recommended by Walter Turner, COM Professor of History and Ethnic Studies.


Magazine and Newspaper Articles

Notable and Diverse Role Models in STEM Recommended by Cheo Massion, Professor of English as a Second Language at College of Marin. "In Celebration of the Release of the Movie Hidden Figures, IBM and Vanity Fair Studios Profile Notable and Diverse Role Models in S.T.E.M."

Duchess Harris Explains the Politics of Possibility  Recommended by Sara McKinnon, Professor of ESL at College of Marin. "By now, we all know the inspiring story—popularized by the Academy Award-nominated film “Hidden Figures”of the Black women mathematicians who worked at NASA during the Space Race.

Duchess Harris, professor and chair of the American Studies department at Macalester College, knew this story inside and out long before it hit the theaters. In fact, she had grown up hearing about these women. That’s because her grandmother, Mariam D. Mann, was among the first Black women who started working NASA in the 1940s, decades before the film was set."

How History Forgot the Black Women Behind NASA's Space Race "In the 1940s, a group of female scientists were the human computers behind the biggest advances in aeronautics. Hidden Figures, an upcoming book and film tells their remarkable, untold story." A useful overview of the movie and book. "They never stopped trying to find ways, large and small, to expand the space for themselves and the people who came after them.” Margot Lee Shetterly, author.

The Nearly Forgotten Story... Overview of the book and movie, including quotes from the author, Margot Lee Shetterly.

Oscars Honor Real-Life NASA Hero Katherine Johnson, But Pass On 'Hidden Figures' Short article describing "Hidden Figures" wins and losses at the Oscars.

Calculating Women by Priyamvada Natarajan, Professor of Astronomy and Physics at Yale. A review of Hidden Figures and two related books. "Although the books by Sobel, Shetterly, and Holt are not polemical, they have an argument: science is not about singular discovery and invention. It is not an activity reserved for male geniuses working on their own. Discovery in almost every scientific field occurs through the collaboration of a large number of experts."

from "The Guardian"

African American Students, Community Colleges, STEM, and more: Various articles (You'll be prompted to log in with MyCOM information)

Women, Community Colleges, STEM: Various articles (You'll be prompted to log in with MyCOM information)


Why So Few? Women in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics

From the American Association of University Women. "The number of women in science and engineering is growing, yet men continue to outnumber women, especially at the upper levels of these professions."


Margaret Hamilton

Margaret Hamilton "was Director of the Software Engineering Division of the MIT Instrumentation Laboratory, which developed on-board flight software for the Apollo space program." Read more.

Her Code Got Humans on the Moon—And Invented Software Itself Recommended by Professor Jacek Korstyrko. From "Wired" Magazine: "Margaret Hamilton wasn’t supposed to invent the modern concept of software and land men on the moon. It was 1960, not a time when women were encouraged to seek out high-powered technical work. Hamilton, a 24-year-old with an undergrad degree in mathematics, had gotten a job as a programmer at MIT..." Fascinating article on a "founding mother" of software.

Margaret Hamilton 1995.jpg


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