Genius of Women : From Overlooked to Changing the World
by Kaplan, Janice







Preface1(12)
PART ONE Genius Isn't What You Think
Chapter 1 Why You've Never Heard of Lise Meitner
13(16)
Chapter 2 The Outrageous Bias Against Mozart's Sister
29(17)
Chapter 3 Einstein's Wife and the Theory of Relativity
46(21)
Chapter 4 How a Teenage Nun Painted The Last Supper
67(19)
Chapter 5 Why Italian Women Are Better than You at Math
86(18)
Chapter 6 Rosalind Franklin and the Truth About the Female Brain
104(13)
PART TWO The Geniuses Among Us
Chapter 7 Why Fei-Fei Li Should Be on the Cover of Vanity Fair
117(16)
Chapter 8 The Astrophysicist Who Does Not Need Tom Cruise
133(17)
Chapter 9 Broadway's Tina Landau Contains Multitudes
150(16)
Chapter 10 RBG and the Genius of Being a Cuddly Goat
166(14)
Chapter 11 The Dark Lord Trying to Kill Off Women Scientists
180(19)
PART THREE How Women Geniuses Fight ... and Win
Chapter 12 Battling the Ariel-Cinderella Complex
199(15)
Chapter 13 Why Oprah Wanted to Be a Beauty Queen
214(18)
Chapter 14 Geena Davis and the Problem of Being Nice
232(17)
Chapter 15 Frances Arnold Knew She Was Right (and Then She Won the Nobel Prize)
249(16)
Chapter 16 How to Succeed in Business by Wearing Elegant Scarves
265(14)
Chapter 17 Why Sally Michel Was a Genius Painter and Mrs. Milton Avery Was Not
279(21)
Chapter 18 The Game-Changing Power of Genius Women
300(9)
Acknowledgments309(2)
Notes311(14)
Index325


A look at the history of women geniuses and how they have historically not been recognized to the same degree as their male counterparts in a variety of fields including science and the performing arts.





Janice Kaplan has enjoyed wide success as a magazine editor, television producer, writer, and journalist. The former editor in chief of Parade magazine, she is the author or coauthor of fourteen books, including the New York Times bestsellers The Gratitude Diaries and I'll See You Again. She lives in New York City and Kent, Connecticut.





*Starred Review* In this deep dive on the universal failure to recognize female genius, Kaplan (The Gratitude Diaries, 2015) includes a little bit of everything: history, psychology, sociology, biology, neurology, humor, celebrity weigh-ins, denial, dismissal, stories of thwarted careers and diverted glory, and exhortations for readers to celebrate the women geniuses amongst us. This sounds like an awful lot, and it is, but Kaplan's writing style is engaging and full of relatable examples. Her tone ranges from strident to self-depreciating, and her observations are supported by facts, anecdotes, personal profiles, and interviews with women who certainly qualify as contemporary geniuses. Readers will be enlightened, stupified, and provoked in turn, as Kaplan repeatedly harpoons ingrained notions about genius being the exclusive domain of men. Her commentary goes far beyond intellectual matters, addressing such diverse issues as nouns with assigned genders (a bridge is masculine in Spanish, but feminine in German) and pseudoscience theories regarding interstellar origins of gender roles. A summary chapter pulls together common traits Kaplan observed in women of genius, past and present, and a final request for women and men to trust each other, work together, and fully appreciate each others' talent. Expect this well-reasoned account to generate a lot of interest and conversation. Copyright 2020 Booklist Reviews.





*Starred Review* In this deep dive on the universal failure to recognize female genius, Kaplan (The Gratitude Diaries, 2015) includes a little bit of everything: history, psychology, sociology, biology, neurology, humor, celebrity weigh-ins, denial, dismissal, stories of thwarted careers and diverted glory, and exhortations for readers to celebrate the women geniuses amongst us. This sounds like an awful lot, and it is, but Kaplan's writing style is engaging and full of relatable examples. Her tone ranges from strident to self-depreciating, and her observations are supported by facts, anecdotes, personal profiles, and interviews with women who certainly qualify as contemporary geniuses. Readers will be enlightened, stupified, and provoked in turn, as Kaplan repeatedly harpoons ingrained notions about genius being the exclusive domain of men. Her commentary goes far beyond intellectual matters, addressing such diverse issues as nouns with assigned genders (a bridge is masculine in Spanish, but feminine in German) and pseudoscience theories regarding interstellar origins of gender roles. A summary chapter pulls together common traits Kaplan observed in women of genius, past and present, and a final request for women and men to trust each other, work together, and fully appreciate each others' talent. Expect this well-reasoned account to generate a lot of interest and conversation. Copyright 2020 Booklist Reviews.





The former editor-in-chief of Parade magazine pays tribute to women who have contributed indispensable work in a variety of fields. Near the beginning, Kaplan (The Gratitude Diaries: How a Year Looking on the Bright Side Can Transform Your Life, 2015, etc.) asks a pertinent question: "In our current era of assumedly aroused consciousness to gender issues, why do both men and women still assume that men's contributions to society are the ones that really count?" The author does readers a service by spotlighting the achievements of many remarkable women. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Felix Mendelssohn had sisters with equal or better talent, but while Fanny Mendelssohn was able to publish her work, Maria Anna Mozart achieved little recognition. In the sciences, the sins are more egregious. Female lab assistants have often conducted breakthrough research only to earn prizes for their professors or to discover the basis of world-changing science that enables another prizewinner. As she searches for characteristics of genius, the author lists a number of requirements. The first is to have acknowledgment, support , and encouragement from a parent or mentor. Being naturally smart (whatever that means) isn't at the top of the list; tenacity and determination come before innate intelligence. How many women are out there who never understood their full capabilities because no one ever mentioned it? From science, technology, and math to literature, art, and psychology, Kaplan presents a diverse cast, including those geniuses still at work—e.g., Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Donna Strickland, who won the 2018 Nobel Prize in physics. Who is considered a genius depends on who sets the rules; throughout history, that has been men. Refreshingly, as the author points out, there are now countless groundbreaking women paving the way for future generations, who will see power differently and demand to be taken seriously. "Once we expect to see women's genius on display," she writes, "the lack of it seems wrong and inexplicable." Kaplan's coverage of this broad-reaching topic is as deep and diverse as women's abilities. Copyright Kirkus 2019 Kirkus/BPI Communications. All rights reserved.






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