Monday, 11 October 2010
20 Essential Works of Feminist Fiction
Following on from previous blog post about Fay Weldon, I received an email from a reader with a link to a blog that lists 20 novels by women that is essential reading. Among them are already a few of my favourite books: Cat's eye by Margaret Atwood, The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath and Fear of Flying by Erica Jong.
HAVE A LOOK AT THE LIST HERE
Which books are your favourite books by women? Which books would you add to the list?
A male friend recently sent me a list of 40 novels he'd recommend. Of those 40 novels only 3 were written by women ... (I don't blame you Brian, if I was to send you a list I'd probably recommend 37 women and 3 men ...)
Any other thoughts on this? Do women prefer to read books written by women and do men prefer to read books written by men? It's more common that women read books by both male and female authors whilst some men wouldn't touch a book written by a woman ... Why is that? Sometimes I wish all writers would just use their initials like M.J. Hyland and A.L. Kennedy, and that no information about them was available on the book jacket.
I think about 75% of the books I read are written by women, maybe because I find it easier to identify myself with female writers and their experience. I'm still in the stage of life when I'm trying to find out who the hell I am and then it helps reading books written by women about women. Especially young and confused ones... On the other hand lots of female writers use a male protagonist and vice versa.
In November there's a festival in Brighton called Storyville - Women Writers Festival. Why do we still need these divisions? Do these festivals highlight women or do they make it more visible that female writing is a minority? How many men will attend the festival?