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Natural Science

Gerty Theresa Cori

Gerty Cori’s work on carbohydrate metabolism, which changed our understanding of diabetes and other diseases, earned her the Nobel Prize for Medicine, making her the first American woman and third woman ever given the honor.

Evelyn Fox Keller

Evelyn Fox Keller’s work in gender, biology, and the history of science led her to question the gendered metaphors and assumptions of biologists and sociologists, which often blinded them to basic scientific facts.

Rita Arditti

As a Sephardic Jew from Argentina, Rita Arditti’s experience as “a minority within a minority” drove her to document another invisible group: the grandmothers of the disappeared children.

Gertrude Elion

Gertrude Elion revolutionized the ways drugs are developed and received the Nobel Prize in Medicine even though she never earned her PhD.

Death of Elsa Neumann, first female doctoral graduate of University of Berlin

July 23, 1902

Death of Elsa Neumann, first female doctoral graduate of University of Berlin

Women of Valor: Jewish Heroes Across Time

Learn about the lives of three trailblazing women and get some practical ideas for how to bring their stories into your community in creative ways.

Birth of Ruth Sager, innovative scientific achiever

February 7, 1918

Birth of Ruth Sager, Innovative Scientific Achiever

Helen Mahut, 1920 - 2010

My friendship with Helen is one I shall always cherish. Although tumultuous, our relationship had an enormous impact on me.

I met Helen through my brother-in-law, who lived in the same small apartment building as Helen. Formidable in her demeanor, she could embody righteous indignation like no one else I knew. Admittedly, I was a bit afraid of her, but I was also curious about her. I ended up moving into Helen’s building soon after meeting her, and our friendship began.

Rita Arditti, 1934 - 2009

My mom, Rita Arditti, was a unique person who lived a great life and did many wonderful things for people. She left a warm and loving family that continues to strive for many of the things she so selflessly devoted herself to. She died on December 25th with dignity and grace, surrounded by the people who loved her; when her condition worsened, she knew that her time had come yet she was fearless. 

Mildred Cohn, 1913 - 2009

Mildred Cohn's scientific career could perhaps be described as a series of silver linings. She displayed a tremendous intellectual talent in her early years—having completed her undergraduate degree in chemistry at Hunter College (then a women's school) before the age of 18, designing a model of a combustion engine by 21, and obtaining a PhD under legendary chemist and Nobel laureate Harold Urey by 24—that today would make her the pick of the scientific litter.

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How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Natural Science." (Viewed on December 13, 2017) <https://jwa.org/topics/natural-science>.

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