Yale University Library News

Library exhibits explore and reveal the history of women at Yale

photo portraits of women scattered on a table top
January 27, 2020

Yale University Library has hosted or will host thirteen exhibits for the 50 Women at Yale 150 celebration. Eleven of the library exhibits explore aspects of women’s history at Yale, while the Senior Essay Exhibits for 2019 and 2020 showcase two contemporary students’ research into the lives and work of women writers.

Library collections together with research by librarians and archivists are central in the commemoration of two historic milestones: the matriculation of the first women students in Yale College in 1969 and the opening of the Yale School of Art in 1869, with the university’s first women students.

The 50 Women at Yale initiative aims “to showcase the depth of women’s contributions to Yale and to the world, to celebrate women at the university, and to inspire thoughtful conversation about the future of women at Yale and in the larger society.”

University Archivist Michael Lotstein has developed an extensive research guide to the history of co-education at Yale.  

All library exhibits are free and open to the public.  See library hours.

These three 50 Women at Yale 150 exhibits are on view now:

Five new 50 Women at Yale 150  Exhibits will open in 2020:

  • Twelve Portraits, Photographs by Tanya Marcuse ’90 MFA, Memorabilia Room, Sterling Memorial Library, curated by Marcuse and George Miles (Curator, Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library), March 2 – June 26, 2020.
  • Celebrating Women in Science and Engineering at Yale, Center for Science and Social Science Information (CSSSI) Media Wall, Kline Biology Tower, curated by Lori Bronars (Life Science Librarian, CSSSI) and Gwyneth Crowley (Librarian for Economics, Psychology and Statistics and Data Science, CSSSI) and designed by Mark Saba (Information Technology Services), April - December 2020
  •  Designing the Drawing Room in Edith Wharton, 2020 senior essay exhibit, curated by Julia Carabatsos ’20. Sterling Memorial Library Exhibition Corridor, May 4 – Oct. 5, 2020.
  • Women at Yale in the Arts Library Special Collections, Haas Arts Library, curated by Allison Comrie (Kress Fellow in Art Librarianship) and Mar González Palacios (Associate Director, Arts Library Special Collections), May-Sept 2020.
  • Celebrating Women at Yale: Staff, Faculty, Volunteers and Benefactors, Sterling Memorial Library, Memorabilia Room, curated by Gwyneth Crowley (Librarian for Economics, Psychology and Statistics and Data Science, CSSSI) and Judith Schiff (Chief Research Archivist, Manuscripts and Archives), July 6 – Oct. 23, 2020.
  • Women at Yale in Graphic Design, Haas Arts Library, curated by curated by Miko McGinty (’93 BA, ’98 MFA) and Mar González Palacios (Associate Director, Arts Library Special Collections), Sept 2020 - Jan 2021. (This exhibit will complement On the Basis of Art: 150 Years of Women at Yale, to be presented August 2020 – January 2021 at the Yale University Art Gallery. )

Four 50 Women at Yale 150 exhibits were presented in 2019:

  • Musical Daughters of Eli: Women Pioneers at Yale, Gilmore Music Library and online, curated by Richard Boursy (Research Archivist, Gilmore Music Library), Feb. 25 - April 30, 2019.
  • The Courtroom, the Couch, and the Archive: Janet Malcolm’s Journalism: Exhibit Corridor, Sterling Memorial Library, 2019 senior essay exhibit, curated by Eve Sneider ’19, May 13 – Oct. 6, 2019.
  • The Walls are Tumbling Down: Coeducation in Yale College, Memorabilia Room, Sterling Memorial Library, curated by Michael Lotstein (University Archivist, Manuscripts and Archives) and Carly Sheehan (Art School ’20), July 22 – Oct. 18, 2019.
  • The First University Art School: 150 Years of the Yale School of Art, curated by Miko McGinty (’93 BA, ’98 MFA) and Mar González Palacios (Associate Director, Arts Library Special Collections), Sept. 20, 2019 - Jan, 18, 2020

Image: Photo by Tanya Marcuse