Martha Geiringer (1912-1943), a remarkable female scientist in Lisbon
Starting from the women’s representation at the Lisbon Zoology Congress in September 1935, Marc Verschooris traces Martha’s Labyrinth. Being Jewish and fighting for justice in her homeland Austria, Martha can escape in the nick of time. In 1938 in Ghent Belgium, the lives of Martha and Yvonne become intertwined. Yvonne, physician and in the frontline for human and women’s rights. Two exceptional women – breaking the patriarchal conventions of the time – who met in troubled times. The book is at the crossroads of Holocaust studies, research on collaboration and resistance in Belgium, migration, and gender.
After a first contact with Marc Verschooris during COVID-19 pandemic (November 2020 till January 2021), the Museum proceeded at his request with several researches in our Historical Archive. This initiative was motivated by the author’s introductory reading of Ana Rita Saldanha’s Master’s Thesis, who did with us (2014) a careful work based on the documentation and materialities related with the 12nd International Zoology Congress held at Lisbon (14-21 September 1935).
The organization, inventory, and digitisation of this documentation allow researchers like Marc Verschooris to access it and explore its possibilities for analysis and reflection.
Constituted by a great number and diversity of items such as photos, programs, insignia, caricatures, registration forms, correspondence, press articles, and publications, it contributed to uncovering clues about that singular and remarkable moment in the Portuguese and international scientific life.
Two years after his research within our collections, in conjunction with the advancement of his investigation in archives of other international institutions, Marc Verschooris presents us with the opportunity to delve into the history of Martha Geiringer, one of the participants in the Congress.
Lecture in English