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The Science Education of American Girls provides a comparative analysis of the science education of adolescent boys and girls, and analyzes the evolution of girls'scientific interests from the antebellum era through the twentieth century. Kim Tolley expands the understanding of the structural and cultural obstacles that emerged to transform what, in the early nineteenth century, was regarded as a "girl's subject." As the form and content of pre-college science education developed, Tolley argues, direct competition between the sexes increased. Subsequently, the cultural construction of science as a male subject limited access and opportunity for girls.
Posted September 3, 2004
'This well-written book offers primary source material that has radically altered this reviewer's thinking regarding women and science. Tolley demonstrates that science was indeed a 'girls' subject,' dispelling the common notion that it has always been exclusively within the male domain. The unexpectedd finding that proportionally more girls than boys studied science in early American academies is well substantiated. Thoroughly researched, this engaging volume concludes that, although the decline of science as a girls' subject in school was, in part, a result of discrimination, the decline of women's interest in science was also an unanticipated result of purposeful efforts to elevate the status of female education in the 19th century. Making use of vignettes, quantitative data, and illustrations, this richly written book traces the complex series of events that led to the domination of males in school science by the 20th century. A must-read for every scholar with interests in gender, isues of equity, history of education, and science education. Practitioners in science will also find this treatment of women and science education insightful. Summing up: Highly recommended. All university libraries; upper-division undergraduates and above. -- D.M. Moss, University of Connecticut.' Copyright American Library Association. This book was designated an 'Outstanding Academic Title' by the Association of College and Research Libraries.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.