Wednesday, April 06, 2016

Women Writers Erased from History

Erased from history: Too many women writers — like Constance Fenimore Woolson — are left to languish in moldy archives. What will it take to bring them back?

4 comments:

Jeffrey Meyerson said...

I never heard of Woolson until I read Leon Edel's 5 volume biography of Henry James.

Bill Crider said...

I'm sure George Kelley knows her and has read a novel or two.

Deb said...

"What they did not foresee was that their gains could be reversed." Either short-sighted or unrealistic, because if history teaches us anything it's that gains can always be reversed!

Oddly enough, IMHO, it's only in the mystery genre that we see close to proportional representation of women writers.

Don Coffin said...

I've never read much mainstream fiction, so my not knowing her work is probably no surprise. Also, what happened is not exactly a surprise, either. While Deb's right about mystery fiction, I suspect that there is some gender bias in which work from the late 19th/early 20th century survives...even from the mid-20th century. (See Jeff Marks: Atomic Renaissance: American Women Mystery Writers of the 1940s and 1950s). It focuses on Margaret Millar, Patricia Highsmith, Leslie Ford, Charlotte Armstrong, Dorothy B. Hughes, Mignon Eberhart, and Phoebe Atwood Taylor. How many of them are still in print?