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Granite Bay Today

The Student News Site of Granite Bay High School

Granite Bay Today

The Student News Site of Granite Bay High School

Granite Bay Today

Overlooked women of history

Women’s History Month celebrates the achievements of women, yet many women are overshadowed by others, here are 3 women from across the globe who are often forgotten by history.

Who decides who is remembered and who is forgotten after death? All cultures around the world depend on both men and women, yet the achievements and contributions of women are forgotten and lost in history. 

Women’s history month began in the United States to celebrate the roles of women in society and history. Every March, people celebrate women from history such as Rosa Parks, Amelia Earhart, Harriet Tubman and Anne Frank. But what about women who have been ‘forgotten’ by history? 

From all across the Earth, here are some women whose contributions were forgotten by history.  


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Ida B. Wells-Barnett
(Cihak and Zima, Ida B. Wells-Barnett)

Ida B. Wells-Barnett

   Ida B. Wells-Barnett was an African-American journalist, suffragist and civil rights activist. She was born into slavery during the Civil War, on July 16th, 1862. As well as the co-founder of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), Wells-Barnett also fought for women’s suffrage. According to the National Women’s History Museum, after the lynching of one of her friends, she focused on white mob violence and published articles in local papers about what she found in an investigation about the reasons black men were publicly killed. Locals were infuriated by her published findings which caused her to be driven out of her community to Memphis then Chicago. 

   Wells-Barnett joined other African Americans and accused the World’s Colombian Exposition with the accusation of locking out and negatively portraying African Americans. She spent much of her life traveling and spreading awareness of the lynchings. Despite heavy criticism, Wells-Barnett continued to advocate for what she believed, as she grew older, she advocated for urban reform in Chicago and later passed away on March 25th, 1931.



Wangari Maathai

Wangari Maathai 

   Wangari Maathai, an Kenyan environmental and political activist, was born on April 1, 1940 and was an author of 4 books (The Green Belt Movement; Unbowed: A Memoir; The Challenge for Africa; and Replenishing the Earth). She was the first African woman to receive the Nobel Peace Prize as well as the first woman in East and Central Africa to earn a doctorate degree. Maathai founded the Green Belt Movement in 1977, which focused on planting trees in Kenya, lessen poverty and eliminated conflicts in the country]

   Maathai wanted to help the women in her country as well, and used the Green Belt Movement to allow women to rise up and get an income and resources. Maathai and many other women worked together to plant over 30 million trees in Kenya while simultaneously teaching over 30,000 women new skills. 

   Maathai often openly challenged the government, especially former president Daniel arap Moi, with the way they used their land. Many times, her critical words led to her being beaten and arrested. Maathai organized many events to fight against the environment being destroyed. One of which being in 1998 – 1999, where Maathai had organized a campaign to protect the Karura forest from being used for development. Maathai passed away on September 25, 2011 after a long fight with ovarian cancer.



Chein-Shiung Wu (U.S National Science Foundation )

Chein-Shiung Wu

   Chein-Shiung Wu was born on May 31, 1912. Wu is a Chinese-American physicist, some of her other titles include “Queen of Nuclear Research,” “Chinese Madame Curie” and most widely known, “First Lady of Physics.” Wu contributed to the Manhattan Project, a project during World War II to produce the first nuclear weapons. 

Wu is best known for the Wu Experiment. In 1956, scientists Tsung Dao Lee and Chen Ning Yang, asked Wu for her help in proving that the law of conservation of parity was not in action during beta decay in nuclear physics. Wu managed to prove that the conservation of parity did not apply to beta decay. Following the discovery, her partners Lee and Yang received the Nobel Peace Prize, yet Wu did not receive the prize or any recognition. In 1965, Wu published her book, “Beta Decay,” which is still being used as a standard reference text. In 1973, Wu became the first person to receive a Wolf Prize in Physics from the Wolf Foundation in Israel. Wu became the first female president of the American Physical Society in 1975. Throughout her life, Wu was a strong advocate of women in science. 

Chein-Shiung Wu passed away from a stroke in 1997. 




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Rachel Guo
Rachel Guo, Co-Editor-in-Chief
Rachel is a junior and Co-Editor-in-Chief. This is her third year on the Gazette staff.

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