Babes of Science

History Podcasts

A podcast about women's work in science, technology, engineering, or mathematics.


United States


A podcast about women's work in science, technology, engineering, or mathematics.






Susan La Flesche Picotte

Susan La Flesche was the first Native American to earn a medical degree. She proceeded to become the physician for the Omaha Nation, traveling by horse and buggy to care for a community spread across an area the size of Rhode Island. Babes of Science is a podcast that seeks to answer two questions: Who are the women who changed the trajectory of science? And why has it taken us so long to recognize their work? Image courtesy of the Nebraska State Historical Society Photograph...


Lady Ranelagh

Every early chemist has heard of Boyle’s law -- the equation that relates a gas’s pressure to its volume. But even if you have some awareness of Robert Boyle himself, it’s unlikely that you’ve heard of his sister...even though she was probably talking him through his ideas, either in person or by letter. This episode of Babes of Science was produced in collaboration with Distillations Podcast. Babes of Science is a podcast that seeks to answer two questions: Who are the women who changed...


Marguerite Perey

Marguerite Perey identified a new element called Francium while she was working in the Curie laboratory. So why don't we know her name? MUSIC: Mile Post 1 by Alex Fitch Drifting Spade by Blue Dot Sessions Building The Sun by Broke For Free Biolumina L2 by Little Glass Men History Explains Itself by The Losers Summer Spliffs by Broke For Free


Henrietta Lacks

Henrietta Lacks developed an aggressive form of cervical cancer, and died at the age of 31. The cells from the tumor on her cervix, however, are still alive today. More than twenty tons of her cells have grown in labs, participating in disease research for the polio vaccine and for AIDS treatment. And Henrietta's cells have literally traveled to space and back. MUSIC: Secret Place by Alex Fitch Kelp Grooves by Little Glass Men Love is Not by Broke For Free Tiptoe (Instrumental) by...


Bertha Pappenheim/Anna O.

Bertha Pappenheim was spending each night by her sick father's bed when she began hallucinating. Josef Breuer would diagnose her with hysteria and spend two years practicing "the talking cure." He and Sigmund Freud later published her account as a case study under the name Anna O. To support the show, head to Or visit for more information on Babes of Science. You can also follow @babescience on twitter for fun facts about women in science...


Irène Joliot-Curie

Irène Joliot-Curie found that radioactivity wasn't just something to be found in the earth's elements -- scientists could make other metals radioactive. And then her research took her right up to nuclear fission...and World War II. To support the show, head to Or visit for more information on Babes of Science. You can also follow @babescience on twitter for fun facts about women in science history. Music in this episode: Thematic by Blue Dot...


Margaret Cavendish

Margaret Cavendish used her writing to debate philosophy with some of the great thinkers of the scientific revolution. And she was the only woman to visit the Royal Society meetings for at least its first hundred years. Visit for more information on Babes of Science, or follow @babescience on twitter for fun facts about women in science history. Music in this episode: Panoramic Showers by Podington Bear Rise by Igor Khabarov Periodicals by Blue Dot Sessions The Sun...


Rita Levi-Montalcini

Rita Levi-Montalcini worked with homemade tools in her bedroom laboratory when she and her family were forced into hiding during World War II. The findings from her bedroom lab were the beginning of her Nobel-winning research and life obsession. Music in this episode: Illway by Blue Dot Sessions Pineapple by Podington Bear New England is Interesting by BOPD Poppyseed by Podington Bear Sunset Part 2 by Podington Bear Wonder Cycle by Chris Zabriskie Uneasy by Blue Dot...


Maria Sibylla Merian

Maria Sibylla Merian painted caterpillars with their corresponding cocoons and butterflies on a host plant. While most of Maria's peers in the 17th century admired her for her artistry, now her work is considered one of the earliest examples of ecology. Image courtesy of Smithsonian Libraries. Music in this episode: The Everlasting Itch For Things Remote by Gillicuddy Violins and Tea (Instrumental) by Loch Lomond Skirting Boards by Bleak House Alchemical by Blue Dot...


Babes Alive: Brittany Bushnell

Imagine you're a PhD student, just getting started. And you realize you can't hear anything out of one ear, and THEN you learn that's because there's a tumor wrapped around the nerve starting at your inner ear and heading into the brain. That's what happened to Brittany Bushnell. She was studying neuroscience...and then she became the class example for abnormal visual reflexes. Music in this episode: Modulation of the Spirit by Little Glass Men Barometer by Bleak House The Temperature...


Zora Neale Hurston

Zora Neale Hurston collected folklore and stories from communities throughout the rural south. Her stories were some of the first that represented black people with pride, and not with a feeling of distance or exoticism. *for links to Zora Neale Hurston's recordings with the Federal Writers' Project, check Music in this episode: Tilly Lend Me Your Pigeon performed by Zora Neale Hurston Mule On The Mount performed by Zora Neale Hurston F.I.B by Ben McElroy Eola by...


Margaret Sanger

Margaret Sanger opened the first birth control clinic in the U.S. one hundred years ago this week. The clinic only lasted ten days, but Margaret was just getting started. Music in this episode: Surly Bonds by Blue Dot Sessions Idea by Kai Engel Bliss by Podington Bear City Limits by Blue Dot Sessions I Am Running With Temporary Success From A Monstrous Vacuum In Pursuit by Chris Zabriskie Grey Sunday by Lee Rosevere Tipsy Xylo by Podington Bear One by Marcel Pequel Screaming...


Ada Lovelace

Ada Lovelace defined modern computing and wrote the first computer program...for an imaginary machine. Because the computer as a usable, physical object wouldn't exist for almost another century. Music in this episode: Heliotrope, Blue Dot Sessions An Opus in Bb, Blue Dot Sessions First Fist, Rho Marble Chase, Blue Dot Sessions Books, Jahzzar The Third, Scott Gratton Wonder Cycle, Chris Zabriskie Candlepower, Chris Zabriskie Danse Morialta, Kevin MacLeod The Fourth, Scott Gratton


Ep11: Barbara McClintock

Barbara McClintock suggested that genes jump from chromosome to chromosome, so people called her crazy. Decades later, they figured out that she was absolutely right. Music in this episode: A Way to Get By, Scott Gratton piano lesson, The Rebel Golden, Little Glass Men Little Strings, The Losers Divider, Chris Zabriskie Modulation of the Spirit, Little Glass Men Spontaneous Existence, Little Glass Men Pieces of the Present, Scott Gratton


Ep10: Mary Anning

Mary Anning found the some of the first evidence of giant dinosaur-like lizards. And actual dinosaurs. And also vampires. Music in this episode: Because You Hold Me Tight, Alex Fitch Dash and Slope, Blue Dot Sessions Vibe Drive, Podington Bear Dark Water, Podington Bear Slider, Blue Dot Sessions Bliss, Podington Bear Day Into Night, Rho


Ep9: Rosalyn Sussman Yalow

After being denied entry to medical school and just barely squeezing into a PhD program, Rosalyn Sussman Yalow developed a tool that could measure hormones in the bloodstream using nuclear medicine. Music in this episode: Showers, Podington Bear Beeth, Blue Dot Sessions K-Eyes, Rho Leadin, Blue Dot Sessions Grey Sunday, Lee Rosevere Ash Gray, Pictures of the Floating World Idea, Kai Engel Widow's Plea For Her Son, The Joy Drops Skyline Horizon, Rho


Ep8: Nettie Stevens

Once upon a time, everything from timing to the temperature at conception could get blamed for the sex of a baby. Even the baby's mom. Nettie Stevens first suggested that there's no blame to be had; a people's sex is all in their chromosomes. Music in this episode: Along the Hwy, Alex Fitch Winter Theme, Blue Dot Sessions Bouncing, Blue Dot Sessions CGI Snake, Chris Zabriskie John the Whale, Ben McElroy Highway Acrylic, Bleak House Stance Gives You Balance, Hogan Grip


Ep7: Alice Ball

IN THIS EPISODE Poncie talks about Alice Ball, who found one of the first treatments for leprosy. After Alice Ball's method was used, some of the first patients from leper colonies are released from isolation, and can return to their families. Music in this episode by Bleak House, Blue Dot Sessions, Ben McElroy, Podington Bear, and Dustin Wong.


Ep6: Florence Nightingale

IN THIS EPISODE Poncie talks about Florence Nightingale, who changed nursing from a field where ladies would hunt for husbands to one where women prevented the spread of disease. Music in this episode by Podington Bear, Blue Dot Sessions, Albin Andersson, and Ben McElroy.


Ep5: Maria Mitchell

Babes of Science is a podcast about women who made an impact in science, technology, engineering, or mathematics. Learn more at IN THIS EPISODE Poncie talks about Maria Mitchell, one of the first women to discover a comet. She spent decades predicting how stars would move through the night sky, became the first professor hired at Vassar, and in her spare time, advocated for women's education. Music in this episode by Broke For Free, Podington Bear, Kevin MacLeod,...