The SPARK Movement has joined forces with Google to help educate people about important women from world history. Users of Google’s Field Trip app can turn on history notifications, and can receive a notification on their phone when they approach an area where a woman made history.
Women are notoriously underrepresented in history, the narrative of which is dominated by powerful white men. This has been changing within academic history, where women’s history has become an essential part of academic research and writing, but that’s been very slow to reach popular audiences, who tend not to read historical monographs very often. The result is that the average person, and the average young girl, doesn’t know much about how women have impacted history.
SPARK’s project, called Women on the Map, is aiming to fix this by enlisting it’s members, girls and women aged 13-22, to research and write about important women in history. That information is then encoded into the app, so that anyone using it can get a nice little dose of women’s history from time to time.
Women on the Map helps to spread the word, as all too often, women’s history is only taught to women. By including women in the Field Trip app, SPARK can reach people who might not otherwise engage in this aspect of history.
Currently, users have to activate Women on the Map themselves, so the audience is still limited, but maybe in time these women can become a standard part of the Field Trip experience.
So far, there are only about 100 women included in the project, but SPARK is adding more all the time. They’re asking users to submit women they would like to see included in the project. Users can submit short bios, and specific locations to link to, which explain why a given woman contributed to history. She has to be deceased, but with a little bit of research, anyone could find someone to contribute.