Cecilia Payne-Gaposchkin was the revolutionary scientific thinker who discovered what stars are made of. But her name is hard to find alongside those of Hubble, Herschel, and other great astronomers. Donovan Moore tells the story of Payne-Gaposchkin's life of determination against all the obstacles a patriarchal society erected against her.
... a welcome addition to the astronomical literature ... a beautifully written and well-researched study. Handling the science with a light but deft touch, Mr. Moore primarily focuses on this astronomer’s personal life, the office politics and the struggles one woman of science faced in the first half of the 20th century.
... an engaging, enlightening biography about a key figure in astrophysics in the 20th century ... isn’t perfect: it dwells a lot on her childhood, and speeds through much of her Harvard career after her landmark thesis. Nonetheless, it’s an important work in helping bring to light an important, but often overlooked, person in 20th century astrophysics.
... engaging and accessible ... skilfully opens up Payne’s achievements and adventures by setting them in the global village of astronomy, against the turbulent social and historical backdrop of twentieth-century Europe and the United States ... well-researched.