Rosalind Franklin at work in a laboratory in 1954.
March is Women’s History Month, and in honor of this occasion, we thought we’d take a look at some women who have made extraordinary discoveries in the field of science throughout the last several decades.
The spotlight starts with our production of Photograph 51 (through March 24, Argyros Stage) and British chemist Rosalind Franklin, who is best known for her role in the discovery of the structure of DNA, and for her pioneering use of X-ray diffraction. Sadly, Franklin’s involvement in cutting-edge DNA research was halted by her untimely death from cancer in 1958, at the age of 37, and she never received the recognition given to her male peers.
Franklin’s name has been in the news again recently, as it was announced that the U.K.-built rover that will be sent to Mars in 2020 will bear her name. The six-wheeled vehicle will search for evidence of past or present life on the Red Planet. Her sister, Jenifer Glyn, recalled to the BBC News that Rosalind had been excited by the news of the Soviet Sputnik satellite—the beginning of space exploration.
“She could never have imagined that over 60 years later there would be a rover sent to Mars bearing her name, but somehow that makes this project even more special,” said Glyn.
Learn more about influential women scientists in the following articles:
Learn more about Photograph 51 and buy tickets.