Would you try a year of reading women
Young Woman Reading as Older Woman Writes. Artist Kitagawa Utamaro c. 1806.
In response to figures
that showed that female writers and reviewers tended to be marginalised, and an atmosphere in which Toronto literary professor David Gilmore actually publicly stated that he taught his students only about books by "serious heterosexual guys"
, writer Joanne Walsh declared 2014 the year of reading women
. She decided to read only books written by female authors for the following year. Lilit Marcus tried the same thing in 2013
and found it odd that people asked her why she would limit herself that way when the question was never asked in reverse. She found that her reading list changed the way she viewed the world around her and that she did not feel that she was missing out on anything.
Looking over my own reading list for 2014 (yes, I keep a list, I'm nerdy like that) I noticed that (excluding comics) I have read 60 books, of which 30 were by men and 30 by women. That's not something I did on purpose, it just happened that way and I suspect it's not typical. I would love to try reading only women for a year just to see what that's like, though I will have to make an exception for books by men that I have already made a commitment to read and review. I'm also starting a bit late, though I suppose I could go from February to February. At the very least I should be able to tip the scales to about 70/30 in favour of women writers. There are so many female writers in both literary and genre fiction that I've been meaning to get around to. On my shelf right now waiting for me to get to them are books by Joanna Russ, Stacia Kane, Kelley Armstrong, Maya Angelou and Denise Scott.
Do you read mostly male authors, or mostly female, or an equal mixture of both? And is a year of reading women something you'd be interested in trying? Are there any particular female authors you've been meaning to read but never gotten around to before?
253704 - 2023-07-19 07:49:14
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