A leading scientist describes his life, his gender transition, his scientific work, and his advocacy for gender equality in science. Ben Barres was known for his groundbreaking scientific work and for his groundbreaking advocacy for gender equality in science. In this book, completed shortly before his death from pancreatic cancer in December 2017, Barres (born in 1954) describes a life full of remarkable accomplishments--from his childhood as a precocious math and science whiz to his experiences as a female student at MIT in the 1970s to his female-to-male transition in his forties, to his scientific work and role as teacher and mentor at Stanford.
Today he is known as Dr. Q, an internationally renowned neurosurgeon and neuroscientist who leads cutting-edge research to cure brain cancer. But not too long ago, he was Freddy, a nineteen-year-old undocumented migrant worker toiling in the tomato fields of central California. In this gripping memoir, Alfredo Quiñones-Hinojosa tells his amazing life story--from his impoverished childhood in the tiny village of Palaco, Mexico, to his harrowing border crossing and his transformation from illegal immigrant to American citizen and gifted student at the University of California at Berkeley and at Harvard Medical School. Packed with adventure and adversity--including a few terrifying brushes with death--Becoming Dr. Q is a testament to persistence, hard work, the power of hope and imagination, and the pursuit of excellence. It's also a story about the importance of family, of mentors, and of giving people a chance.
Acclaimed scientist Hope Jahren has built three laboratories in which she's studied trees, flowers, seeds, and soil. Lab Girl is a book about work, love, and the mountains that can be moved when those two things come together. It is told through Jahren's remarkable stories: about her childhood in rural Minnesota with an uncompromising mother and a father who encouraged hours of play in his classroom's labs; about how she found a sanctuary in science, and learned to perform lab work done "with both the heart and the hands"; and about the inevitable disappointments, but also the triumphs and exhilarating discoveries, of scientific work.
A riveting memoir-manifesto from the first female director of the National Science Foundation about the entrenched sexism in science, the elaborate detours women have taken to bypass the problem, and how to fix the system. Rita Colwell is one of the top scientists in America: the groundbreaking microbiologist who discovered how cholera survives between epidemics and the former head of the National Science Foundation. But when she first applied for a graduate fellowship in bacteriology, she was told, "We don't waste fellowships on women." A Lab of One's Own documents all Colwell has seen and heard over her six decades in science, from sexual harassment in the lab to obscure systems blocking women from leading professional organizations or publishing their work. A Lab of One's Own shares the sheer joy a scientist feels when moving toward a breakthrough, and the thrill of uncovering a whole new generation of female pioneers. But it is also the science book for the #MeToo era, offering an astute diagnosis of how to fix the problem of sexism in science--and a celebration of the women pushing back.
My Brief History recounts Stephen Hawking's improbable journey, from his postwar London boyhood to his years of international acclaim and celebrity. Lavishly illustrated with rarely seen photographs, this concise, witty, and candid account introduces readers to a Hawking rarely glimpsed in previous books: the inquisitive schoolboy whose classmates nicknamed him Einstein; the jokester who once placed a bet with a colleague over the existence of a particular black hole; and the young husband and father struggling to gain a foothold in the world of physics and cosmology. Writing with characteristic humility and humor, Hawking opens up about the challenges that confronted him following his diagnosis of ALS at age twenty-one. Tracing his development as a thinker, he explains how the prospect of an early death urged him onward through numerous intellectual breakthroughs, and talks about the genesis of his masterpiece A Brief History of Time--one of the iconic books of the twentieth century.
A new history of the space race explores the lives of both Soviet and American engineers. At the dawn of the space age, technological breakthroughs in Earth orbit flight were both breathtaking feats of ingenuity and disturbances to a delicate global balance of power. Beginning with the launch of Sputnik 1 in October 1957 and closing with the end of the Apollo program in 1972, Launius examines how early space exploration blurred the lines between military and civilian activities, and how key actions led to space firsts as well as crushing failures.
Testimonios brings together first-person narratives from the vibrant, diverse, and complex Latinx and Hispanic mathematical community. Starting with childhood and family, the authors recount their own individual stories, highlighting their upbringing, education, and career paths. Their particular stories, told in their own voices, from their own perspectives, give visibility to some of the experiences of Latinx/Hispanic mathematicians. Testimonios seeks to inspire the next generation of Latinx and Hispanic Mathematicians by featuring the stories of people like them, holding a mirror up to our own community. It also aims to provide a window for mathematicians (and aspiring mathematicians) from all ethnicities, with the hope of inspiring a better understanding of the diversity of the mathematical community.