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Pippa Goldschmidt : Nova Scotia Vol 2 Anthology. Pre-Order Available Now!

Image of author Pippa Goldschmidt
Pippa Goldschmidt - Nova Scotia Vol 2

Nova Scotia Vol 2 anthology, edited by Neil Williamson and Andrew J. Wilson, is now available for pre-order! It celebrates the depth and breadth of Scotland's dazzling science fiction and fantasy landscape from its haunted islands to its transformed cities and everything in between. Jenni Coutts created the gorgeous cover art.

You can order the book on its own, or buy the bundle anthology deal - both from the Luna store.

Today we'd like to introduce you to Pippa Goldschmidt and the story "Lise And Otto".

About the author:

Pippa Goldschmidt lives in Edinburgh and Berlin, she has a background in astronomy and is an Honorary Fellow at the Science, Technology and Innovation Studies unit at the University of Edinburgh. In 2020 she co-edited (with Drs Gill Haddow and Fadhila Mazanderani) Uncanny Bodies; a specially commissioned anthology of fiction and essays responding to Freud’s uncanny, and published by Luna Press. Her most recent books are the non-fiction essay Night Vision (Broken Sleep Books) and a short story collection about women in science; Schrödinger’s Wife (and other possibilities) (Goldsmiths Press/Gold SF). 

Her work has been broadcast on BBC Radio 4 as well as appearing in ArtReview, Tamarind, BBC Sky At Night magazine, the Times Literary Supplement, Gutter and Magma.

Pippa on the story:

"Lise and Otto" was inspired by the friendship and professional relationship between real-life nuclear scientists Lise Meitner and Otto Hahn. Lise originally came from Vienna and was one of the first women in Austria to get a PhD in physics, before moving to Berlin in 1908 and starting a long and successful collaboration with Otto. They worked together for 30 years until Lise had to flee the Nazis in 1938 because she was Jewish, and managed to move to Sweden.

They managed to continue their work together and in early 1939 jointly discovered induced nuclear fission; Otto (together with Fritz Strassmann) carried out an experiment in which uranium atoms were bombarded with neutrons, and Lise (together with her nephew Otto Frisch) explained the theory behind the experimental findings. In Nazi Germany, Otto had to publicly deny that he was still collaborating with Lise and so her essential contribution to this work was denied, first by the Nazis, and later by the Nobel Committee who awarded him the Nobel Prize for this work in 1945. Ironically, Lise was working in the lab run by Manne Siegbahn, one of the men responsible for the awarding of this Nobel Prize; apparently he didn’t approve of women working in science. 

Whilst Lise did receive several awards during her professional life and was very highly thought of by other physicists such as Einstein, this lack of recognition by the Nobel Committee meant that her essential role in nuclear fission has been consistently underplayed. Even after 1945 Otto never acknowledged it, (perhaps because it would have shown up his earlier lies about her contribution) and it was only in the 1980s that the truth was (re)discovered.

My story came about because I couldn’t help wondering how Otto Hahn’s feelings about denying his long-term friend and collaborator might be manifested in the lab…


TOC of Nova Scotia Vol 2
TOC of Nova Scotia Vol 2


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