Women have always been left aside when it comes to scientific discoveries, as women did not have the same advantages that men had. Women did get to study and go to universities, but little by little women believed that they were part of the community just as much as men. After a while, the same rights men had, were slowly being acquired by women.
Equality was every year increasingly adjusted to reality, even though society has not reached full equality between men and women. Marie Curie was a powerful woman, she and her husband Pierre Curie discovered and fought for what they believed. Marie Curie was an exceptional woman who believed that gender would not stop her from doing anything she put her mind to. Maria Salomea Sklodowska, also known as Marie Curie, was born on November 7, 1867, in Warsaw, Congress Kingdom of Poland. She was the child of a mathematics and physics teacher. She was known because of her prodigious memory and won at the age 16 the gold medal in a competition in her secondary education. She was very smart in all the aspects, as she learned from her father all the ideas of mathematics and physics. She had to start working at a very young age, but she never gave up her studies.
She worked as a teacher and also educated women workers, in the nationalist idea of a free university. She had so many responsibilities because her dad took all their savings and did a terrible investment that left them with nothing. Which was the primary reason she entered the labor force. From her earnings, she helped her sister, which at this point has moved to Paris, to pay her school tuition. Always thinking ahead, she thought that after her sister got her degree, she could finally receive some help, on her career and life. But not everything goes as one plans it.
In 1891 she moves to Paris, which her sister helped her to move. Now using the name Marie began to meet a lot of people, well-known physicians, which was a dream for her. It was very tough for her, as she began to study, but she proved that nothing was impossible for her. She used to live off bread, butter, and tea, but she made her primary goal.
Everything she had always dreamed of, became true. She got her license of physical sciences in 1893 and started working on Lippmann’s research. After all, she worked for, she finally got what she wanted, and the pleasant news did not end there, she met Pierre Curie that summer, she met her partner in life, and got married, also her new partner at work. Pierre and Marie started working together, discovering something that will be known in the world forever, Marie named it after her native country Poland, the polonium in 1898. Which later they discover the radium, too. All of those discoveries, lead to others Scientific the theories and ideas, that lead to a new phenomenon everyone calls radioactivity. In 1903, this partnership leads to a Nobel Prize in Physics for Marie.
Which is very important to mention, she was the first woman that received a Nobel Prize in Science, thanks to the discovery of radioactivity. After Curie discovered the energy an element could have by itself, and she discovers the elements polonium and radium. She started to try to obtain these elements from minerals, it took her a lot to figure out how they could get the element by itself. The dissection of the element from the minerals was hard work, as they did not have the material necessary to do it.
They did not have a proper laboratory where they could work on, everything was dirty, “A visiting German chemist described it as a cross between a stable and a potato cellar”. Not having the tools, or the place did not stop them from being passionate or to not get the work that they were researching for, done. For Marie, she describes, ‘it was in this miserable old shed that the best and happiest years of my life were spent.” When they got what they wanted, they could not believe to see the tubes with radioactive activity, they would remember the event forever. They both made an incredible discovery, that led to Marie’s thesis in her doctoral dissertation. It was in September 1902 when they produced 0.1 g of pure radium chloride.
All of these success mentions before, took a long process of searching for the right answer to every problem she had gone through, so she can find the element, in the mineral. In the meantime, she had two daughters, Irene who was born in 1897, and Eze who was born in 1904. Science took a big sacrifice, but she could handle having to take care of her children, while she was doing the research. She was very smart, and he never gave up on all the ideas and goals she wanted to pursue. They have gone from working in a shed to having the money enough to do more research. The Sorbonne hired Pierre as a professor, and one of the advantages of having won a Nobel Prize