Queen of Physics and AAPI Heritage Month

I recently read a children’s book about Wu Chien-Shiung who Newsweek once called the Queen of Physics. She is also known as the First Lady of Physics. A Chinese-American physicist born in China who received her PhD in the U.S., and later became a U.S. citizen in 1954, she is credited with disproving the belief that nature does not distinguish between right and left – a concept known as parity. For disproving the law of parity, two of her male colleagues received the  Nobel Prize in Physics in 1957 while Wu was excluded. She was nominated at least 7 times for the Nobel Prize in Physics prior to 1966 but never received it during her lifetime. Aware of gender-based discrimination rampant at the time for women in the field of science, she famously stated in October 1964 at an MIT Symposium:

“I wonder whether the tiny atoms and nuclei, or the mathematical symbols, or the DNA molecules have any preference for either masculine or feminine treatment.”

As a dual national of the U.S. and China, she fought for social justice and gender equality, paving a path for American and Asian women in physics and science. In honor of Asia Pacific Islander and Heritage Month, I let Wu’s words carry on her legacy.

公平と平等 (Fairness and Equality)

See the source image

Posted by reimanko

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