No, no, no, Dave, you can’t unhear that!
–Gareth, making the odontophobic alarm call
Before I get silly, I need to say this: over two thousand women died, and died horribly, because tycoons lied. They died slowly, piecemeal, falling apart like Brundlefly, because tycoons will always be tycoons, and bigwig tycoons think “the little people” are interchangeable and replaceable, and everything is copacetic if you hurl enough money at it.
The five Radium Girls that had the nerves of steel to sue the Radium Corporation, before anyone ever thought to sue their bosses for jobsite injuries, and therefore embodied the American spirit:
- Grace Fryer
- Edna Hussmann
- Katherine Schaub
- Quinta McDonald
- Albina Larice (Quinta’s sister)
They deserve top billing, and they deserve to be remembered by name. Thanks to their pain and fortitude, we have the right to hold our employers accountable, we have OSHA, and we have workmen’s compensation.
That being said…
So many bookses, yes, Precioussssessss.
Undark * Jenna Hammerich (Kindle Single, so short and sweet, good place to start)
Radium Girls * D. W. Gregory
Radium Girls: Women and Industrial Health Reform, 1910-1935 * Claudia Clark
Radium Halos: A novel about the Radium Dial Painters * Shelley Stout
Deadly Glow: The Radium Dial Worker Tragedy * Ross Mullner
Also included in:
The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer * Siddhartha Mukherjee
and a book I have recommended before, and highly recommend again:
but wait, there’s more!
The Emperor of All Maladies has been made into a documentary series by Ken Burns.
And yes, radium butter was a thing. Want some gleaming, glowing toast, motherfucker?
Also, new Special Dollopish Tag: overfucking. Thanks, guys, thank you. Grateful tear.
Remember David Hahn‘s fascination with clocks in antique stores? The Radium Girls are the ones who would leave a small pot of luminescent paint inside the clock in case the owner needed to touch up the dial. Yeah. The Radium Girls’ evil corporate bosses’ actions led to the glowing potting shed. Plus, Edison was looming over William Joseph Hammer‘s shoulder the whole time, thinking I can claim this invention as my own, too, yes I can…
See, it is all connected. I told you so. I. Told. You. So.
(i knew if i stopped taking my medication i could see it all and i can ican icanican)
Bands from this episode:
- Radium Butter
- Radium Hand
Cultural references from this episode: