The Book


Throughout history, women have caused wars, defied the rules, and brought men to their knees. The famous and the infamous, queens, divorcees, actresses, and outlaws, have created a ruckus during their lifetimes—turning heads while making waves. Scandalous Women tells the stories of the risk takers who have flouted convention, beaten the odds, and determined the course of world events.

•When Cleopatra (69BC – 30BC) wasn’t bathing in asses’ milk, the last pharaoh of the Ptolemaic dynasty ruled Egypt and forged an important political alliance with Rome against her enemies – until her dalliance with Marc Antony turned the empire against her.

•Emilie du Chatelet (1706 – 1748), a mathematician, physicist, author, and paramour of one of the greatest minds in France, Voltaire, shocked society with her unorthodox lifestyle and intellectual prowess -- and became a leader in the study of theoretical physics in France at a time when the sciences were ruled by men.

•Long before Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat on the bus, Ida B. Wells-Barnett (1862 – 1928) fought to end discrimination and the terrible crime of lynching and helped found the NAACP, but became known as a difficult woman for her refusal to compromise and was largely lost in the annals of history.

•Gertrude Bell (1868 – 1926) had a passion for archaeology and languages, and left her privileged world behind to become one of the foremost chroniclers of British imperialism in the Middle East, and one of the architects of the modern nation of Iraq.