Science toys– for boys AND girls!

A feminist friend was looking for science toys for her kids, and she found Curious Minds, an awesome online shop that very unfortunately used the tagline “Cool science gifts for big boys”. So she wrote to them. And what a great response she got!

Didn’t you see the trailing ‘& girls’? Probably not, i just added it, red-faced. We too detest the assumption that science is men only, I don’t know how that one got in.

BTW we were watching Curiosity landing this morning and were pleased to see several women in mission control. We ourselves met working for Hubble & Lucy was one of very few females there. We definitely want to encourage girls to become scientists, technicians & engineers!

7 thoughts on “Science toys– for boys AND girls!

  1. The thing that strikes me between the eyes was this quote: “We ourselves met working for Hubble & Lucy was one of very few females there. ”
    Females.
    Not women.
    I would be prepared to be the house that a man would be ‘one of the few men’ not one of the few males. This is happening all over: on TV, in sport (front page of UK newspaper: ‘Fantastic females’), in politics… everywhere. It’s as if we’re a different species. Men get to be men. Women get to be ‘the female of the species’
    I’m not sure what this means, but I don’t think it’s good. Anyone want to do a study on the incidence in any given day/week/month and then find out if it’s as demeaning as I think it is?

  2. The bit that hits me square between the eyes is this: “We ourselves met working for Hubble & Lucy was one of very few females there.”
    Females
    Not women.
    My bet is that a man would be… ‘one of the few men there’
    But we get to be ‘the female of the species’. This is happening on television, radio, sport (Broadsheet front page at the weekend, ‘fantastic females’) and on all the social networking sites. Since when did we stop being women? I’m not sure what it means, but I don’t think it’s good.
    Science being available to anyone who’s interested is, of course, good.

  3. Manda, I don’t share your intuition at all about this usage. And I see no reason to question the feminism of someone who has responded so wonderfully well to criticism. In fact, I think doing so is a big mistake.

  4. As someone who cringes when adult women (which I define as anyone over 18) are called “girls,” I have no problem with the word as an adjective (obviously) or a noun. To me it is a neutral word with no connotations beyond those contained in “woman.”

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