Did you know that three African-American women helped build NASA? No, probably not. I certainly didn’t. A new film, aptly titled Hidden Figures, is finally telling Katherine Johnson, Dorothy Vaughan and Mary Jackson’s story and honoring these historical women of color.
In honor of MLK Day, a special screening of the movie, along with a panel of women of color in STEM will be held in New York City. Even if you’re not in New York, make sure to to catch the film in theaters to learn about and celebrate diversity in media and the sciences. Remember, Hollywood pays attention to sales, so vote with your wallet to let them know you want to see more diverse stories on screen.
This movie so refreshing because we don’t usually see movies/tv shows/any other media with people of color as the main characters. Let alone women of color. Let alone women of color in the sciences! Guys, this is exciting. When we do see these marginalized groups in media, they are often stereotyped and portrayed negatively. Movies like Hidden Figures are increasing diverse representation and helps us see black women as more than just one thing.
And, I’d be lying if I said a movie poster w/ three Black women as centerpiece and they’re not slaves or maids isn’t giving me life!! ????✊?pic.twitter.com/hs5qnOVkmk
— Melinda D. Anderson (@mdawriter) December 27, 2016
Hidden Figures is also undoing the white-washing of our history, so shout out to the filmmakers for that!
Besides all the great messages in the film, it’s also a straight up good movie. With a stellar cast of Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer and Janelle Monáe, the film’s 92 percent on Rotten Tomatoes isn’t surprising. Go out and see it!
The screening on MLK Day will be co-hosted by #GoBeyond, a docuseries about glass-ceiling-shattering women in science and will take place at 7 p.m. at AMC 34th. After the film showing, a panel Q&A with folks from NASA and folks affiliated with the film discussing how to foster greater diversity in media and the sciences, according to the event’s page.
The panel will include Tamara Robertson, chemical and biomolecular engineer turned actress and producer and a host on this season of MythBusters, and Emily Levesque, a Hubble Fellow who has discovered a number of red supergiants and the first candidate for a quantum star.