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To balance out that last post: Sometimes, people are awesome April 8, 2014

Posted by Erin Ptah in News Roundup.
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Both executive orders mirror provisions of the Paycheck Fairness Act, which Congress has twice failed to pass. One would prohibit federal contractors from retaliating against employees who share their salary information with each other. […] The second executive order will instruct the Department of Labor to create new regulations requiring federal contractors to report wage-related data to the government, in the hope that it will hold them more accountable for salary differences based on sex or race.”

“17-year-old Angela Zhang […] has been making headlines recently after taking home a check of $100,000 from the national Siemens science contest, and now it has been suggested that her research could lead to a potential cure for cancer.

“A physics student from Egypt’s Sohag University, Aisha Mustafa, 19, has patented a new type of propulsion system based on quantum theory that she says could propel space probes and artificial satellites without using any fuel.

That one time the US had a lesbian First Lady.

I did not know that the woman who wrote America The Beautiful, Katharine Lee Bates, lived with intimate partner Katharine Coman for twenty-five years. Now I know. Learning!

Ching Shih is getting a miniseries! Next up, in Actual Women Pirates of History Who Deserve To Be On TV: “Jeanne de Clisson, the ‘Lioness of Brittany’ and fearsome pirate queen, stalked the English Channel for French ships from 1343 – 1356.”

Mona Parsons: Ziegfield Follies star, Nazi resistance leader, avoided death by firing squad, walked 125 km barefoot through enemy territory, basically all-around dazzling.


Awesome Women: pirates, lesbian weddings past & present, and topless Victorian fight club May 24, 2013

Posted by Erin Ptah in News Roundup.
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“Up until her death in 1914 at the age of 82, Old West badass “Stagecoach” Mary Fields had a standing bet at her local saloon: Five bucks and a glass of whiskey said she could knock out any cowboy in Cascade, Montana with a single punch. After the third or fourth dumb asshole tried to take her up on it, nobody ever had the balls to do it again.

“The first recorded duel between English women took place in 1792 over an insult about age. Lady Almeria Braddock and Mrs. Elphinstone exchanged pistol shots at ten yards, missed each other and then concluded the event with smallswords. Upon drawing blood from Mrs. Elphinstone’s elbow, Lady Braddock declared her honor satisfied, and the two curtsied to each other and left the field. Witnesses agreed that the ladies conducted themselves with great courage and dignity.” A history of women in European dueling.

The first rule of topless victorian ladies swordfighting club is that topless victorian ladies swordfighting club is not to be mentioned in mixed company.”

These look like some gorgeous examples of WWII-themed steampunk cosplay. Look like.

“An LGBT blogger and her partner became the first gay couple to get married at Tokyo Disney last Friday, undeterred by a lack of legal recognition for same-sex partnerships in Japan.” (Their dresses are so pretty.)

So, okay, we know that the most successful pirate in history was Ching Shih, a Chinese woman. And her gender wasn’t exactly an outlier, either.

The highest-ranked weightlifter in America is one Sarah Robles. Not highest-ranked female weightlifter, but highest-ranked weightlifter, period. And she was still having trouble getting a sponsor in time for the Olympics last year — although, in a credit to justice, she finally did.

“During the 19th century, women in what some Victorians referred to as “female marriages” lived together, owned property in common, called each other “hubby” or “wedded wife” and were recognised as a couple, including by the traditionalists among their neighbours and friends.”