Powerful post by a female Indian scientist

(3 Posts)
TheDoctrineOfSciAndNatureClub Sat 02-Mar-13 22:15:18

Extract:

"For my work needs experiments in the laboratory, not safely conducted at home on a computer – experiments run over many days and nights. I need to stand by the side of my instruments, collecting samples, injecting solutions, analyzing data. I cannot ask my experiments to wait – for I am feeling unsafe tonight. I cannot go home when the sun sets, for I will miss collecting the data that I need to solve the problem. I cannot ask a colleague to do my work for me – for thus are differences introduced into a controlled experiment.

What then can I do? Just what I have been doing this past month – setting up the experiment, sitting in the laboratory with a stopwatch by my side trying to catch a quick nap, and locking the door to the laboratory for whatever little safety it provides. And yet, when I hear the footsteps in the corridor, I look around for weapons that I pray I may never need to use. Acid bottles within arms’ reach, packets of caustic potash by the side of my laboratory notebook, an empty glass beaker that I may need to break…

Someone tries the door and I freeze in silence – hoping, praying that this time it is just one of my colleagues, come back to start his experiments. Hoping that I can still trust my colleagues to behave with respect and kindness towards me, even if I am the only woman in this group of scientists. Hoping that if I have to start screaming, someone will hear and come and not turn away indifferently. For I am one of those women – I do not know my place. I am an engineer, a scientist, a working woman, dependent on no one, deferring to no man. I work in the laboratory and at night, I challenge the opinions of others – for that is the scientific method. I do it out of passion for this wonderful subject, out of love for this good earth and a desire to help those who have little when I have so much."

www.lablit.com/article/758

Startail Sat 02-Mar-13 22:34:03

I don't know how to respond to that except with deep sadness and enormous anger.

I spent years as a research student working into the evening and traveling home after dark. I never felt afraid in the dept. and only a little cautious in the darkest corners of campus. The lighting was awful.

I hope she stays safe and wish there was a way to campaign for international women's rights that didn't get stifled by claims of religious, cultural or racial bias.

All women should be free to go about their lawful business, alone, dressed as they like, when they like and have the right to have sexual relations with who they like where ever in the world they are born.

This should not just be my DDs birthright, but every woman on Earths birth right.

TheDoctrineOfSnatch Sat 02-Mar-13 22:46:30

"All women should be free to go about their lawful business, alone, dressed as they like, when they like and have the right to have sexual relations with who they like where ever in the world they are born.

This should not just be my DDs birthright, but every woman on Earths birth right. "

^^ This. What a great way of putting it.

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