The generation straddled wars, genres, and identities, leaving behind the staid writing of Edwardians, or what Hemingway referred to as “broad lawns and narrow minds.” Gertrude Stein was their godmother, acting as both an artist and a supporter of the arts.
The ways in which Anne, the mercurial, earnest girl at the center of the story lived, learned, grew, and blundered her way through life resonated with me, a perennial outsider and dreamer, wounded by things that, like Anne’s cruel treatment at the hands of the Hammonds and the orphanage
In my mind, Joan Didion and Annie Dillard are linked, two sides to the same coin, one the yin to the other’s yang. This is unfair to both women.
Up until recently, I’d always stacked Simone de Beauvoir’s The Second Sex on the same mental shelf as War and Peace and In Search of Lost Time—books unwieldy in size and densely written, requiring a nearly extinct attention span.
Could a novel simultaneously peeve feminists and slash our image of the Garden of Eden? You might think so when you read Eve out of Her Ruins, a novel by Mauritian author Ananda Devi. The short and gorgeous book empowers women in a way that might infuriate feminists.
If that reality was so vital to Nabokov, if its silenced heart is what makes the novel so haunting, then there is space, surely, surely, for the real, breathing girl to speak properly.
Though Tillie Olsen published very little in her lifetime, her body of work had a great impact on the women’s movement of the 1960s and ‘70s. She was a champion of underrepresented writers. Olsen’s book, SILENCES, became a classic feminist text, and her works of fiction were met with
I learned I am a Winona in a world made for Gwyneths. From the onset, Massey probes how society shapes or punishes women based on how we talk about or dismiss them. She writes with as much empathy about the women we mock as she does the women we
By focusing on women in a kitchen, Welty seems to shrug the mantles that keep her marginalized—regional and gendered—subverting expectations for canonical American literature as public or inhabited by important men.
Erin Wunker teaches and researches in the fields of Canadian literature and culture. She is chair of the board of Canadian Women in the Literary Arts (CWILA) and co-founder and managing editor of the feminist academic blog Hook & Eye: Fast Feminism, Slow Academe.