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Improbable Warriors: Women Scientists and…

Improbable Warriors: Women Scientists and the U.S. Navy in World War II (edition 2001)

by Kathleen Broome Williams

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Title:Improbable Warriors: Women Scientists and the U.S. Navy in World War II
Authors:Kathleen Broome Williams
Info:US Naval Institute Press (2001), Hardcover, 288 pages
Collections:Your library, Biography, Computers, History, Read 2012, Reviewed, Science, War (World War II)
Tags:Navy, World War II, women, science, scientists

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Improbable Warriors: Women Scientists and the U.S. Navy in World War II by Kathleen Broome Williams

  1. 00
    Weather or not by Florence Wilhelmina Van Straten (rhbouchard)
    rhbouchard: Van Straten is featured in Improbable Warriors.

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Improbable Warriors is a comprehensive documentary profiling four highly-educated and motivated women whom proudly served "behind the scenes" in United States World War II campaign.

Dispelling myths that women were kept in the kitchen and subservient, Kathleen Broome Williams created a book that no only profiles the achievements of Mary Sears, Florence van Straten, Grace Murray Hopper, and Mina Spiegel Rees but illustrates the Department of the Navy changed (if only temporarily) established views on women's mental capacity and ability to contribute to the war effort.

These women were enlisted under the WAVES program or Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Service. These four pioneers only represented a number of females holding Masters or PhD degrees; however many more women served in more traditional positions, we need not only think of Rosie the Riveter.

My only complaint about the book is the the chapter profiling Grace Murray Hopper (pg 113-153). She was a computer scientist and like most other "Waves," served in a capacity outside of her formal training. The chapter however primarily explained the histrionics of Cdr. Howard H. Aiken and his "Algebra Machine" the Harvard Mark I computer. Granted, Hopper had much to do with the operation of the computer and running data, but I found a bulk of the chapter didn't mention Hopper for pages.

Now, if you happen across the USS Hopper or USNS Mary Sears, you will know they were named after two indispensable women of the highest caliber. ( )
  HistReader | Nov 19, 2012 |
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On 30 July 1947, U.S. Navy women celebrated their fifth anniversary as Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Service.
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