‘Now is the time to understand more, so that we may fear less.’
Marie Curie won two Nobel Peace Prizes – in 1903 and again in 1911 – but that doesn’t mean her male contemporaries gave her an easy time. To the contrary, she battled sexism throughout her entire career. ‘I have frequently been questioned, especially by women, of how I could reconcile family life with a scientific career,’ she once revealed. ‘Well, it has not been easy.’ Her critics never wore her down, however. Not only did Marie Curie’s research contribute to the development of x-rays in surgery, her tenacious spirit set her apart from her male peers. During World War she even helped equip ambulances with x-ray equipment, driving them herself to the front lines.