In Hidden Figures, why did Katherine Johnson take the blue binders with her every time she went to the washroom?

1 Answer 1


She was expected to do her work on time and she had a lot of it but there wasn't a bathroom close enough for her to visit. It is established that she is gone 40 minutes a day to visit the only colored bathroom which is a half mile across campus. The blue binders are the work that she is supposed to be double checking.

So given the length of the time it takes her to go to the bathroom, she is taking her work with her so that she can still get some of it done on her bathroom trips.

  • 5
    This is surely the correct answer, but it seemed to me that her walk across campus and back accounted for most of the 40 minutes (say, 15 minutes to get there, 10 minutes in the bathroom, 15 minutes back). If that's true, then I find it hard to believe that she could have completed even a single complete binder in the 10 minutes she was sitting in the bathroom. I think her hauling an entire stack of binders was simply a comedic way to emphasize her dilemma.
    – BradC
    Feb 23, 2017 at 17:18

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