Mary Anderson (1866-1953) invented the windshield wiper blade. Her visit to New York City on a snowy day and seeing that her street car driver had to get out of the vehicle to clean the accumulating snow was what led to her invention.
Stephanie Keolek (1923-2014) was an American chemist who invented Kevlar. It is a heat-resistant and exceptionally strong synthetic fiber. Keviar is used for over 200 applications including bullet-proof vests, fiber optic cables, aircrafts, vehicles, boats and buildings.
Carmen Amaya (1913-1963) was a Romani dancer and she had a huge impact on the art of Flamenco not just in Spain but around the world.
Katherine McCormick (1875-1967) was an American suffragist and philanthropist. Her vast wealth was inherited. She was responsible for funding the research that discovered the birth control pill.
Nzingha Mbanda (1583-1663) was a powerful African ruler (present day Angola) who fought for the independence and stature of her kingdoms against the Portuguese slave trade. She was intelligent but also ruthless, cunning and devious.
This is a very short book, with just a few paragraphs describing each of these women. I would be curious to find out how the author chose these 5 socially, culturally and ethnically diverse women. Carmen Amaya is the only woman I recognized from colorful Flamenco dance posters on the walls of my middle school Spanish class. J.J. and I also saw posters of Carmen Amaya when we visited Barcelona. But never did I think of her achievements as an international acclaim as described in this book.
Aloha -- Cathi