Judith Zinsser, professor of history, introduces the Marquise Du Chatelet at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, March 8, in the Harry T. Wilks Conference Center at Miami Hamilton during the next installment of the Michael J. Colligan Lecture Series.
Zinsser is a celebrated scholar of both French enlightenment and European women's history. She just authored a book that has created an international sensation in historical and scientific circles. La Dame D'Esprit has been reviewed and acclaimed in such diverse periodicals as The New York Times Review of Books, The Times (London) Literary Supplement and, most recently, Scientific American.
The core of Zinsser's argument - that the Marquise surpassed the great Voltaire in both letters and scientific expertise - is causing historians and scientists to assess more completely the critical role that women played in the development of modern science.
Zinsser will discuss the remarkable life of Emilie de Breteuil, marquise Du Chatelet (1706-1749), a mathematician, physicist and philosopher whose translation of Sir Isaac Newton's Principles of Natural Philosophy remains the French translation still used today. A reception will follow.