Today’s Dame of the Day is Ana Blandiana (March 25, 1942-). Born in Romania during Soviet rule, Blandiana’s father spent years in Communist prison before his accidental death several weeks after his release. Blandiana wrote poetry and worked as a literary editor and librarian; as the regime grew more restrictive, her work became more protest-oriented. Blandiana eventually entered politics and campaigned for an open society and an end to communist rule.
Today’s Dame of the Day is Ana-Maria Avram (September 12, 1961-). This Romanian composer creates experimental arrangements for soloists, chamber groups, and electronic performance. Avram’s work is affiliated with spectralism, a technique which uses computers to analyze the timbre of acoustic and artificial tones.
Today’s Dame of the Day is Iana Matei (April 30, 1960-). Matei married young and had a son, but later divorced her husband when he became a violent alcoholic. During the revolution, Matei fled from Romania to Serbia with her son. She was captured at the border and imprisoned, but Matei invoked a hunger strike until the United Nations acknowledged her situation. Following her release, she spent time in Australia before returning to Romania and founding Reaching Out Romania, a non-profit dedicated to rehabilitating sex workers and breaking the cycle of human trafficking.
Today’s Dame of the Day is Daniela L. Rus. Currently, Rus heads the MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory. Rus’s research explores how robotic systems can collaborate to achieve a common goal. At MIT, Rus developed self-reconfiguring robots that can mimic human behavior. In 2002, she became a MacArthur Fellow.