Bryn Mawr College marks 125th year with conference on women's education in a global context





Despite the progress made during the last century, in most places on Earth men continue to hold an overwhelming advantage. With few exceptions, when it comes to health, education, work, salaries, social status, and political power, women do not even come close to parity.

That was just one of the stark facts in play as Bryn Mawr College convened an international conference Thursday - "Heritage and Hope: Women's Education in a Global Context" - to help mark the 125th anniversary of the famed women's school.

From a global perspective, the statistics are indeed grim, beginning with genital mutilation and female infanticide. HIV drugs only reach half the mothers in need. Only 19 percent of parliamentary members worldwide are women. And although women now earn more than half the doctoral degrees in the United States, they remain woefully underrepresented in engineering, science, and math....

The events began with cake. Massive quantities of red velvet, pumpkin chocolate, vanilla, and lemon were served as an a capella group led a round of "Happy Birthday, Bryn Mawr." The first lecture was presented by Helen Lefkowitz Horowitz, a professor of history at Smith College, who reviewed how for centuries it was a scientific claim that women were biologically unfit for intellectual life....

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