As part of International Women's Day 2020, this week we are celebrating 8 women that the Society is proud to have been associated with (in big or small ways). The first one is Elizabeth Percival, aunt or elder sister of one of our founders Dr Thomas Percival.
“To her he is said to have owed much”. What she did exactly to inspire such a quote we don’t know because Elizabeth’s achievements as those of so many other women were written out of history. The boy she took such care of would go on to found our Society and became rather well known for his “Medical Ethics” which you can read here: bit.ly/2VZMIIq
The second woman we would like to celebrate is Lucy Winifred Faraday. Hers was the 1st paper written by a woman read to the Society in 1899. Her brother W. Barnard Faraday did the reading. A year later she became the 1st woman elected to the Society as an Ordinary Member. Her election is briefly mentioned in the Proceedings for the Annual General Meeting of 24th April 1900 but we don't seem to have on record what motivated the decision to finally admit women to the Society. Did her brother who was on the Society's Council intervene in her favour?
And this begs the question: how much knowledge, new ideas, opportunities for discussion did the Society miss by forgoing women’s ideas and works for 119 years? This is what happens when women have to wait for men’s permission to have access to spaces.
You can read Lucy's paper by clicking on the link below.