The value of women's work and the magic of numbers

A look at Myra Strober's new memoir and the work of Alex Bellos

The value of women's work and the magic of numbers

A 'Rosie the Riveter' at work in 1943, by Alfred T. Palme

The second wave of feminism crashed out of the United States in the 1960s. Building momentum it swept across the world, breaking down the sexist barriers and behaviours that plagued women from Ireland to Israel. An important player in all of this was the educationalist, Myra Strober.

A college student during the '60s, Myra witnessed firsthand the explosion of this new chapter of feminism. It wasn't until 1970 that she herself fully joined the movement though, having just been denied tenure because of her gender. This sexist setback set Myra to turn her economist's mind to tackling gender discrimination in the workplace, education, and at home.

In her new memoir, Sharing the Work, Myra explores her life and how it was shaped by her gender and how people treated her because of it. She speaks with Susan Cahill about how people can fight back against sexism, the impossible expectations placed on women, and why it's so important that both genders share the load.

Before this Susan is joined by author, journalist, broadcaster, and number lover Alex Bellos to talk about his passion for maths and all the books his written on numbers. 

Though his journalistic career began with sports in South America, authoring a history of Brazilian football and ghostwriting Pele's biography, Alex returned to his first love, numbers, when he came back to his native England. Since then he has authored a number of successful books on numbers, their importance in the world, and our fascination with them; including the popular Alex's Adventures in Numberland and Alex Through the Looking Glass.

Join Alex and Susan as they wander through the fantastic world of numbers and maths. How did zero change the world? Were we always able to think about negatives? And what are imaginary numbers?

This week's music to read to,

The show opens with Jóhann Jóhannsson's Flight From The City with Infinitude by Matthew Bourne bringing part one to a close. The show ends with Nocture 4 by Ben Lukas Boysen.