Strong Female Sunday 38

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Today’s Strong Female is Edmonia Lewis (b. 4 July 1944d. sometime after 1909 maybeish):

4 feet of sculptor, 40 miles of awesome.

4 feet of sculptor, 40 miles of awesome.

Why is she strong?

Much like many of our historical women here, she was an internationally recognized sculptor who had to fight against sexism and racism in the latter half of the 1800’s.  She was African American and Native American both.  Her art gave great respect to the subjects at hand at a time when many other sculptors did not.   She lived in both the United States and Rome, Italy.  The sculptures themselves are quite impressively done [1].

The alert student will notice that one of the links used today goes back to “Kickass Women In History”, a monthly special run by the fine people at the Smart B*tches, Trashy Books website.  Many thanks are given to Ms. Carrie S.’s article published last week for giving me the idea for the lady to feature this week.  Go check out their articles, they go far more into depth than I normally do in my sketches and writeups here.

Keep it civil, people.

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[1] Also, she sculpted curls in marble way better than me.  Seriously I have trouble making curls look right in drawing, much less sculpture.

Strong Female Sunday 37

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Today’s Strong Female is Imperator Furiosa of Mad Max:  Fury Road.

Don't let the lack of guns fool you.  If needed she could still kick your butt straight to the salt flats.

Don’t let the lack of guns fool you. If needed she could still kick your butt straight to the salt flats. However, she will show respect to those who give it.

Why is she strong?

Oh my goodness you have to ask?  She is physically quite capable of holding herself in battle, driving through sandstorms and removing any obstacles in her path.  She is able to work with other people, and navigate tricky negotiations.  While focused and determined, she is not a cold unfeeling lump of ice, as she is understandably upset when one of her major goals did not work out.  However, this instance of a goal not working out does NOT define her, as she is able to adapt and work to turn the situation around.  This is arguably the most important part of her journey, and the one of Max:  that people break, but if they work on it themselves AND accept help it gets better.

Author’s Note:  I had a really hard time narrowing down a single woman to draw from this film.  I could have gone with any of the wives, or the Vuvalini biker grandmas.  Really a lot of great instances of women helping women instead of cutting each other down.  Toxic masculinity called out for the horrible, pathetic, strange thing it is.  No rape scenes either, and no forced romance.  Go see the movie.

Keep it civil, people.

Strong Female Sunday 36

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Today’s Strong Female is Dr. Maria Goeppert-Mayer (b. 28 June 1906 – d. 20 Feb 1972):

Teamed up with Harold Urey and Enrico Fermi while at the Manhattan Project.  What, like it's hard?

Teamed up with Harold Urey and Enrico Fermi while at the Manhattan Project. What, like it’s hard?

Why is she strong?

Like many of the historical women presented on this site, she had to fight against a lot of societal and institutional sexism.  She also developed the Nuclear Shell Model of electrons around atoms, for which she won the Nobel Prize in Physics (split with Hans D. Jensen and Hans Suess.)  She even has a unit named after her, (the Goeppert Mayer unit GM,) which is a measurement of the two-photon absorption cross-section.

While she did defend herself and earned all credentials headed her way, she also was not afraid to work with other scientists and share credit and ideas when necessary.  Cooperative science at this level is a rare thing to hear about.

As a personal note, it is interesting to see a historical example of the two-body problem which affects highly intelligent married academics everywhere.  That is, how do you get both of you employed in the same city?  There’s a story there that I did not research before making this post.

Keep it civil, people.

Strong Female Sunday 35

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Today’s Strong Female is special to me, as she is my own interpretation of a Crystal Gem from Rebecca Sugar’s Steven Universe:  Snowflake Obsidian!

Snowflake Obsidian.  Not a fusion.  Huge fan of soft-serve ice cream.  Shares love of Cookie Cats with Steven.

Snowflake Obsidian. Not a fusion. Huge fan of soft-serve ice cream. Shares love of Cookie Cats with Steven.

Why is she strong?

Well, since I created her, this is subjective, so here goes.

Appearance:

Her gem is unusually split into two parts:  a white/gray crescent which fits around a black disk.  Each one is on one wrist (you can see the black disk clearly in that picture of her above on her left wrist,) but a split in gem structure does not indicate a split in personality.  Her skin is black as, well, obsidian except for patches of white/gray, which shift over her body according to their own schedule.  She is fond of her mohawk and will add blue or purple dye to the tips as she sees fit.  She normally wears street clothes and scalenet leggings.

Fighting Style and Weapons:

When the gems are linked together, she can summon twin daggers.  If the need is great enough she can also shoot the daggers straight out of her wrists or use them as extensions of her arms.  Her blades were originally shades of black and gray, but she learned how to color them pink long ago when she came to Earth with the gems who rebelled against their homeworld.

She can also manipulate sound, either cancelling voices entirely or sending them around corners.   This is very helpful if she is getting too many voices at once to process, or if she needs to get info across large distances quickly.  It tends to work on voices far more than noises made by machines or waterfalls or things like that.

She tends not to start a battle, but she will finish it if provoked.  She and Amethyst sometimes walk around downtown daring anyone to mess with them by mere presence.  Occasionally she will spar with Garnet, or get finer blade maintenance tips from Pearl.

Other cool things:

She is a huge huge HUGE fan of soft-serve ice cream, to the point that she will jump down the throat of one of those giant acid eye-centipedes if there is a Dairy Queen on the other end of it.  She and Steven bonded over a love of Cookie Cats.

Keep it civil, people.

Strong Female Sunday 34

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Today’s Strong Female is Ms. Laverne Cox [1]:

Apologies, my 10-color marker set cannot capture her hair very well.

Apologies, my 10-color marker set cannot capture her hair very well.  Also her wardrobe is much better than I am drawing here.

Why is she strong?

First of all, she is an amazing actress, the first trans woman of color to have a leading roles on a major TV show.  Second, she uses her position to be an advocate for other trans people.  She could have just been an actress and been done with it, but she is choosing to help others.  That takes a lot.

Keep it civil, people.

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[1] I’m sure that I do not need to remind long-time readers of this, but she is a living actress.  Please treat her with respect.

Strong Female Sunday 33

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Today’s Strong Female is Annie Jump Cannon (b. 11 Dec 1863, d. 13 April 1941.)

Please do not use colors of OBAFGKM as proper colors of star classification.  This is a case of artistic license because the letters look pretty.

Please do not use colors of OBAFGKM as proper colors of star classification. This is a case of artistic license because the letters look pretty.

Why is she strong?

Though she dealt with significant hearing loss, she was able to not only invent a star classification system but also to classify more stars than anyone before or since.  She worked with several other ladies under Edward C. Pickering at Harvard University.  That type of collaborative, supportive effort and environment is very rare in science and hugely understated.  Neil DeGrasse Tyson’s Cosmos series has an entire segment dedicated to Cecilia Payne, with whom Cannon collaborated.

Keep it civil, people.

Vacation This Week

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There is no Strong Female Sunday this week, as I am on a short vacation.  It will return next weekend, or earlier should I feel inspiration.

Good things which happened this past week:

-Got handed a ladybug and a caterpillar by some students (best feeling).

-Spoke with a highly qualified chemist about Metroid Prime and Magic:  The Gathering.

-Saw the Pentagon.

-Saw extended family.  Also met good people.

-Ate amazing cranberry/bacon/bison bar.  Seriously the best meat jerky bar ever.

Strong Female Sunday 32

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Today’s Strong Female is Lt. Uhura of Star Trek [1]:

Rocking communications harder than you do.

Rocking communications harder than you do [2].

Why is she strong?

She’s a highly competent officer on board the U.S.S. Enterprise.  While communications may not seem like a huge field to be a part of, think about the last time your internet went out and how much you flipped out.  Lt. Uhura keeps those lines of communication open so that everyone can come back from their mission.  In-universe, she is also one of a handful of officers to wear a red shirt and come back alive every single time.  Also, in-universe things have advanced such that her skin color and gender is not such a big deal [3].

Keep it civil people.

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[1] Yes, I dual-linked with the post from A Mighty Girl on Facebook.  They keep having good ideas.

[2] Shout out to both Ms. Nichelle Nichols and Ms. Zoë Saldana, both actresses who have played the character.  I only drew the Uhura from the first series, as I have not seen the more recent movies with Ms. Saldana in them.

[3] I was not alive in the 1960’s, but I have read that it WAS a big deal to see representation like that.  I saw some different representation over 20 years later in the late 1980’s and early 1990’s, but I benefit from the earlier pioneers.