Hidden Figures: The American Dream and the Untold Story of the Black Women Mathematicians Who Helped Win the Space by Margot Lee ShetterlyHidden Figures: The American Dream and the Untold Story of the Black Women Mathematicians Who Helped Win the Space by Margot Lee Shetterly

Hidden Figures: The American Dream and the Untold Story of the Black Women Mathematicians Who…

byMargot Lee Shetterly

Hardcover | November 15, 2017

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The #1 New York Times bestseller

-WINNER OF ANISFIELD-WOLF AWARD FOR NONFICTION
-WINNER BLACK CAUCUS OF AMERICAN LIBRARY ASSOCIATION BEST NONFICTION BOOK
-WINNER NAACP IMAGE AWARD BEST NONFICTION BOOK
-WINNER NATIONAL ACADEMIES OF SCIENCES, ENGINEERING AND MEDICINE COMMUNICATION AWARD

The phenomenal true story of the black female mathematicians at NASA at the leading edge of the feminist and civil rights movement, whose calculations helped fuel some of America’s greatest achievements in space—a powerful, revelatory contribution that is as essential to our understanding of race, discrimination, and achievement in modern America as Between the World and Me and The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks. The basis for the smash Academy Award-nominated film starring Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer, Janelle Monae, Kirsten Dunst, and Kevin Costner.

Before John Glenn orbited the earth, or Neil Armstrong walked on the moon, a group of dedicated female mathematicians known as “human computers” used pencils, slide rules and adding machines to calculate the numbers that would launch rockets, and astronauts, into space.

Among these problem-solvers were a group of exceptionally talented African American women, some of the brightest minds of their generation. Originally relegated to teaching math in the South’s segregated public schools, they were called into service during the labor shortages of World War II, when America’s aeronautics industry was in dire need of anyone who had the right stuff. Suddenly, these overlooked math whizzes had a shot at jobs worthy of their skills, and they answered Uncle Sam’s call, moving to Hampton, Virginia and the fascinating, high-energy world of the Langley Memorial Aeronautical Laboratory.

Even as Virginia’s Jim Crow laws required them to be segregated from their white counterparts, the women of Langley’s all-black “West Computing” group helped America achieve one of the things it desired most: a decisive victory over the Soviet Union in the Cold War, and complete domination of the heavens.

Starting in World War II and moving through to the Cold War, the Civil Rights Movement and the Space Race, Hidden Figures follows the interwoven accounts of Dorothy Vaughan, Mary Jackson, Katherine Johnson and Christine Darden, four African American women who participated in some of NASA’s greatest successes. It chronicles their careers over nearly three decades they faced challenges, forged alliances and used their intellect to change their own lives, and their country’s future.

 

Margot Lee Shetterly was born in Hampton, Virginia in 1969. She is a graduate of the University of Virginia's McIntire School of Commerce. After college she worked in investment banking for several years. Her other career moves have included working in the media industry for the website Volume .com, publishing an English language magaz...
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Title:Hidden Figures: The American Dream and the Untold Story of the Black Women Mathematicians Who…Format:HardcoverDimensions:368 pages, 9 × 6 × 1.17 inPublished:November 15, 2017Publisher:HarperCollinsLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:006236359X

ISBN - 13:9780062363596

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Reviews

Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing Fantastic and inspirational read. We need more books on WOC's accomplishments.
Date published: 2017-09-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from So Amazing What a great read and what a fantastic reminder that this level of discrimination was faced, had been overcome not too long ago! These ladies are my heros!
Date published: 2017-09-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Feel good book! Such a great book, its definitely a feel good book, the accomplishments of these women are inspiring!
Date published: 2017-09-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Cool What a sweet deal, definitely worth the investment. I would recommend this to all my friends.
Date published: 2017-09-09
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great book!!! Very detailed orientated and pleasing.
Date published: 2017-07-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wow! I could barely put this down. Very detailed--had to push through all the sciencey stuff, but still amazing.
Date published: 2017-07-02
Rated 4 out of 5 by from EXcellent! Strong! What a fantastic books. Feelings of happiness, butterflies, angry, happiness all rolled into one book!
Date published: 2017-06-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from enjoyed the book- inspiring and thought provoking. It makes me wonder how many more people were kept out of the history books, because of their gender- or the colour of their skin. And with all the successes of the Civil Rights Movement- why does it feel that the world is moving backward, to where the colour of your skin, your religion, or our many other differences, again determines if you are accepted, and how you are treated.
Date published: 2017-06-15
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Important but dry While I really enjoyed learning the story of the amazing women in Hidden Figures, I found that parts of these novels were dry, at least for me. I love history, but some of the history related to mathematical or engineering aspects of the novel went right over my head. That said, the facts about the women were amazing, and I'm inspired by all the overcame.
Date published: 2017-06-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Read Loved the book, the message was phenomenal
Date published: 2017-06-01
Rated 4 out of 5 by from So interesting! I found the subject matter fascinating, including the movie. But the book was a bit hard to follow due to the narrative style. Still totally worth it because it's a shame that we don't know about these amazing women and the amazing intertwined history they shared with the south, the Civil Rights Movement, and the other men and women of the time.
Date published: 2017-05-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fabulous and important What a great read! Important yet little known history, so glad to be finally learning about these women and their work. I'll be giving this book as a gift to friends and family.
Date published: 2017-05-26
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great Read Truly amazing real life story. Glad to see that these women were ultimately recognized for their incredible contributions, but it is utterly shameful that it took so long. It really makes you wonder if the human race will ever learn to be more accepting and open to the ideas and contributions of all, regardless of sex or race...
Date published: 2017-05-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing This is such a wonderful story, well worth the read.
Date published: 2017-05-14
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Amazing Book! This book was inspiring and thought-provoking as it details the hidden past of black women and their involvement in the US Space Flight achievement.
Date published: 2017-05-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wonderful An interesting read and an important story that needs to be told. Well written.
Date published: 2017-05-11
Rated 3 out of 5 by from An Interesting Read For those interested in Black history, and the early days of US Space Flight (and WW2 aircraft design) this is an interesting book, and quite a good read
Date published: 2017-05-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excited to read this book! I saw the movie and I am excited to read the book.
Date published: 2017-05-04
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Cookie is better onscreen Honestly, I liked the movie better.
Date published: 2017-05-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from An amazing book An important story that needed to be told
Date published: 2017-04-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great read #plumreview Must read book.This book doesn't disappoint. Now I have to watch the movie.
Date published: 2017-04-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Important and interesting I read this before the movie and loved it! Really loved this one. The real life characters, the beautiful writing and the important topics discussed were pleasant to read. Highly recommend.
Date published: 2017-04-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from love i watched the movie and i loved it and the book is just as good
Date published: 2017-04-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved this ! I got his book as a gift before the movie came out and I was so impressed and excited and couldn't wait for the movie to come out.
Date published: 2017-04-02
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A Tribute to Unsung Heroines From the development of American air power during World War II to putting a man on the moon, the author discusses the important contributions of (mainly) black women mathematicians to scientific fields spanning from aeronautics to celestial mechanics. The story begins at a point in time in America where women were not generally recognized as competent for technical/scientific positions and black women had the additional problem of surmounting the serious drawbacks pertaining to their race. The book’s main theme focusses on a few noteworthy black women’s trail blazing contributions to these fields in a background of racial segregation, the civil rights movement and efforts towards integration. I found the book to be quite interesting and eye-opening – indeed an homage to some of the unsung heroines who have contributed so much towards the betterment of humanity.
Date published: 2017-03-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from What a story! I nice addition to your library.
Date published: 2017-03-22
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Important Untold History This is an important story, told in a clear, concise way. However, the author is not an historian and I think that is also clear at times. Missing an experienced storytellers touch.
Date published: 2017-03-17
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Very interesting, but a bit dry Very interesting, but a little dry at times. Though, it's well worth the read as it's very important to understand the trials of women and black people. It's also a very good historical overview of NACA/NASA. I would highly recommend this for anyone interested in math, aeronautics, race relations, etc.
Date published: 2017-03-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from No words It was truly inspiring. Definately worth reading.
Date published: 2017-03-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing Story !!! Heard about the movie and had to read the book first. Amazing journey these women went on, the accomplishments they had, and the contributions they made, nothing short of amazing.
Date published: 2017-03-09
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Excellent! Watched the movie and had to pick up the book. It is so inspiring! Enjoyed a lot.
Date published: 2017-03-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from YAS amazing so inspiring and powerful, long live feminism!
Date published: 2017-03-04
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Splendid! I have watched the movie and its amazing! I have bought the book afterward and thought it was a more detailed version of the movie. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE!
Date published: 2017-03-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Really good. Absolutely worth your time.
Date published: 2017-02-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from An excellent read! This book is a wonderful, brilliant and inspiring true story about African-American history. It's sad that this story was buried for so long.
Date published: 2017-02-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Good book Nice to see people being recognized for their contributions
Date published: 2017-02-26
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Important Important story to tell, I'm grateful and impressed for the women's stunning accomplishments. Thank you Margot Shetterly for the research and need to share
Date published: 2017-02-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Hidden Figures This story is insprirational!
Date published: 2017-02-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wow Everyone should read this book to be to appreciate the achievements of these amazing women!
Date published: 2017-02-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from fabulous! Excellent book! Great character definition
Date published: 2017-02-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing! Recognizing that lots of times we give credit to the one with fame, but there is so many other people behind a huge success!
Date published: 2017-02-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Truly empowering! I wish this book could be read in schools as part of the curriculum. #plumreview
Date published: 2017-02-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great read! A great story! I am glad I read it before the movie!
Date published: 2017-02-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Empowering read This is such a great novel, I highly recommend it.
Date published: 2017-02-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from amazing read An amazing read! Saw the movie then read the book. The book is so much better! Loved it!
Date published: 2017-02-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Empowering! Loved this because too many times girls can be intimidated to try or go for things in areas dominated by men. It definitely motivated me to keep working hard for my dreams and goals.
Date published: 2017-02-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Awesome movie This was an amazing movie. Girl power!
Date published: 2017-02-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from LOVED THIS Such a good book about how three women who were of visible minority rose to the top despite the odds they were against. Such a good book and great movie.
Date published: 2017-02-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from great so glad to have read this, a must really!
Date published: 2017-02-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from So interesting. Loved reading the book before the movie - glad this story was told.
Date published: 2017-02-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Insightful This is an incredible story that I knew nothing about before picking up this book. A wonderful book for Black History Month.
Date published: 2017-02-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from powerful Great novel, the movie is just as good. It is very powerful. I would recommend it.
Date published: 2017-01-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Powerful This book is an example of power, dominance, and the fight for human rights. This book was amazing in the sense that it was about NASA and how they couldn't launch the rocket ship without Katherine (who figured out all the math in order for it to be successful), Dorothy (who figured out how to work the IBM machines), and Mary (who became the first African-American female engineer). A beautiful story of how three African American women came together as a team and helped NASA launch John Green into an orbit and guaranteed his safe return.
Date published: 2017-01-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing I loved this. It is so powerful and I recommend it to everyone.
Date published: 2017-01-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great The movie is good but the book is better, more insight
Date published: 2017-01-26
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good read Lots of history but not so much dialogue.
Date published: 2017-01-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Incredible Why wasn't this in the history books?
Date published: 2017-01-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fantastic The book was great- can't wait to go see the movie!
Date published: 2017-01-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fantastic You learn something new everyday and what these women did is amazing. Shame they weren't as well known to most people.
Date published: 2017-01-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Important story #plumreview
Date published: 2017-01-14
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Inspiring Great read, a bit slow at times but so great
Date published: 2017-01-12
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great I think the story is incredibly inspiring and important, however, I found it hard to get into this book. There is almost too much detail. Still definitely worth a read, especially before watching the movie!
Date published: 2017-01-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from amazing An amazing story of these African American women and their contribution to the American space program. This was such an uplifting and inspirational story.
Date published: 2017-01-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wonderful This book was a beautiful and uplifting read. I definitely recommend it!
Date published: 2017-01-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Hidden Figures Thank you to Margot Lee Shetterly for revealing the incredible story of these African American women - their amazing intelligence, contributions, and achievements- all accomplished despite the state of the world of their time. Finally recognition and credit where it is due!
Date published: 2016-12-13

Editorial Reviews

“Restoring the truth about individuals who were at once black, women and astounding mathematicians, in a world that was constructed to stymie them at every step, is no easy task. Shetterly does it with the depth and detail of a skilled historian and the narrative aplomb of a masterful storyteller.”