Based on a multi-year process of research and development, funded in part by an NEH planning grant, PRI and a team of paleontologists, historians, and museum staff have developed a traveling exhibition that will examine the challenges and successes of these women – past and present – as they strive towards scientific discovery.
Learn more about hosting the traveling exhibition by downloading this PDF.
This exhibition will be the first of its kind. Visitors will explore the social and political frameworks within which these women investigated their scientific ideas and pursued careers. Upon leaving the exhibitions, visitors will understand that despite facing gender-based prejudices, women in paleontology have long been and continue to be integral to building our understanding of the history of life on Earth.
Besides the 2,000 square foot traveling exhibit, the project includes associated programming for informal educators and classroom teachers and a hardcopy book.
Through the exhibition and its associated outreach, visitors will: 1) have an improved understanding that science is connected to the broader cultural context in which it is practiced; 2) be better able to describe the complexity of the roles that gender and society played, and continue to play, in paleontology in the US; 3) be able to describe ways that opportunities for women in paleontology are different today than they have been in the past; and 4) gain a better understanding of paleontology in general and why it is important. Existing humanities scholarship about US history and the history of science will significantly inform the project, along with primary and secondary sources gathered by the project team about the history of women in paleontology.