This week, Dr. Piper Harron, mathematics professor based at the University of Hawaii, and a vocal feminist and supporter of under-represented groups in the academic mathematics community, published a provocative blogpost on the website of the AMS (American Mathematical Society), in which she points out some of the glaring gender and race inequalities in academia. What do you think happens, when a Black female professor at a 21st century university mentions some of her criticisms of gender inequality? You guessed it. Over the last days, her article has stirred a hurricane of angry backlash – not only from mathematicians but also from wider sources. Piper Harron continues to receive a lot of harrasment from alt-right media and trolls.
“Remember that you live in a world where people don’t succeed in a vacuum; most success happens on the backs of others who did not consent. You have no idea how successful you would have been if you were still you, but with an additional marginalization (not white, or not male, or not cis gender, or with a disability, etc).
“What can we do? When every role model, when every concept you have, is steeped in sexism, what can you do?”
(read the full blogpost here)
Fight back and support others who do! Sociologists: support mathematicians in their struggle for equality in science!
You can read more of Piper Harron’s work on her awesome blog, The Liberated Mathematician http://www.theliberatedmathematician.com.