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The Radium Girls: The Dark Story of…
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The Radium Girls: The Dark Story of America's Shining Women (original 2016; edição 2018)

por Kate Moore (Autore)

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1,9841566,340 (4.13)160
As World War I raged across the globe, hundreds of young women toiled away at the radium-dial factories, where they painted clock faces with a mysterious new substance called radium. Assured by their bosses that the luminous material was safe, the women themselves shone brightly in the dark, covered from head to toe with the glowing dust. With such a coveted job, these "shining girls" were considered the luckiest alive--until they began to fall mysteriously ill. As the fatal poison of the radium took hold, they found themselves embroiled in one of America's biggest scandals and a groundbreaking battle for workers' rights. The Radium Girls explores the strength of extraordinary women in the face of almost impossible circumstances and the astonishing legacy they left behind.… (mais)
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Título:The Radium Girls: The Dark Story of America's Shining Women
Autores:Kate Moore (Autore)
Informação:Sourcebooks Inc (2018), Edition: Reprint, 477 pages
Colecções:A sua biblioteca
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The Radium Girls: The Dark Story of America's Shining Women por Kate Moore (2016)

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This book was a quick read on a very interesting topic. I didn't particularly like the writing, but it was simple to read and the subject matter really stands on its own regardless of the author's skill.

The book discusses the history of the "Radium Girls," young women who worked in studios where they painted glow-in-the-dark watch dials using paint made of radium. The young women were taught to point their paintbrushes by putting them in their mouths, in order to paint a fine, accurate line on the watch dials. In the early 20th century, the effects of radioactive substances, such as radium, on humans weren't fully known. As you can imagine, after a while the women began to experience symptoms of radium poisoning.

The author did in-depth research on the women painters, the companies they worked for and historical period in which the events occurred. She includes details of the many horrible ailments that afflicted these poor women and chronicles their battles with public opinion, the medical establishment and the legal system in their attempts to get treatment and financial restitution.

I felt that the author included more characters in the book than I could keep track of. I suspect she may have been wary of leaving out any of the victims of this terrible tragedy because they all deserve to be heard. However I think the reader may have been better served by focusing on the details of fewer people and going more in-depth. There was some amount of repetition among the women's stories that I think after a while may have blunted my emotional reaction to their stories. Additionally, the author's descriptions of the women (she insists on calling them "girls" even as they age into their 30's) are a little facile. Kind of flat, like young women characters in a 1950's pulp novel.

Overall, I'm glad I read this book. It provides a lot of detail about an awful period in America's industrial history, and it seems that we may not have learned all the lessons that it offered. ( )
  S_the_Libarbarian | Oct 6, 2021 |
Radium was an element first discovered by the Curies and was thought to be a wonder drug used in many preparations. Unfortunately, this wonder drug turned into a horrible predicament for the girls who worked in factories applying the radium paint to watch dials in various factories including one in Illinois and in Newark and Orange, New Jersey. The dial painters were instructed to lick the paint brushes before applying the radium which resulted in poisoning the girls who eventually died from it but not before they suffered through their bones dissolving and their inability to work and take care of their families. Eventually the families and workers rose up to fight the companies that caused their deaths and disfigurements. This is definitely a page turner but also a sympathetic look at the workers and the greed of industry that denied for years to help the women who were afflicted. ( )
  JulieLill | Oct 2, 2021 |
A really intense, deeply sad and enraging look at the neglect of capitalism, the radium industry, and the way that corporations resist responsibility for harms done on the job. Moore does a great job of humanizing the women who were poisoned by radium, especially in making sure that the extreme pain and decay they lived with never got sort of normalized within the text—each new tooth lost, each sarcoma growth, each limp, had such a significance behind it, and that significance was never lost. It was also written with such obvious care for the women and their families.

Strongly, strongly recommend for people who haven’t gotten to it yet (I’d been sitting on my copy for like three or four years now, oops,) it’s clearly so well written and such a powerful story that will make you SO MAD but also think more seriously about the impacts of industry. ( )
  aijmiller | Sep 28, 2021 |
A fascinating piece of recent history ( )
  ibkennedy | Aug 23, 2021 |
The story was interesting and important but wow this was so much longer than it needed to be. ( )
  adriennealair | Aug 14, 2021 |
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Moore, Kateautor principaltodas as ediçõesconfirmado
Brazil, AngelaNarradorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
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I shall never forget you... Hearts that know you love you And lips that have given you laughter Have gone to their lifetime of grief and roses Searching for dreams that they lost In the world, far away from your walls.   ---Ottawa High School yearbook, 1925
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For all the dial-painters And those who loved them.
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The scientist had forgotten all about the radium.
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As World War I raged across the globe, hundreds of young women toiled away at the radium-dial factories, where they painted clock faces with a mysterious new substance called radium. Assured by their bosses that the luminous material was safe, the women themselves shone brightly in the dark, covered from head to toe with the glowing dust. With such a coveted job, these "shining girls" were considered the luckiest alive--until they began to fall mysteriously ill. As the fatal poison of the radium took hold, they found themselves embroiled in one of America's biggest scandals and a groundbreaking battle for workers' rights. The Radium Girls explores the strength of extraordinary women in the face of almost impossible circumstances and the astonishing legacy they left behind.

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