“In 2014, celebrate Women’s History Month all year with your favorite women writers—or with women writers you have yet to discover! This March we’ve taken a look at the VIDA Count, which collects yearly statistics around how many women have been published in literary forums like “The New Yorker,” “The London Review of Books,” “The Atlantic,” or “Harper’s.” The results have often been staggering. Even outside the VIDA Count, it’s easy to note other differences in numbers. As of March 2014, Nobel Prizes in Literature have been awarded to 97 male writers. Nobel Prizes in Literature awarded to female writers? 13. Why does this disparity occur? Why does it matter? With the facts in mind, what could our response be?
If you’re interested, join the conversation around 2014, “The Year of Reading Women.” Start with the stats behind the VIDA Count, or with Joanna Walsh’s article describing the hopes behind her Twitter hashtag #readwomen2014. Put a hold on the brilliant and popular “Americanah,” by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, which just won the 2013 National Book Critics Circle Award. Look for new ways to contemplate classic authors—discover “The Gorgeous Nothings,” a stark and beautiful book that offers up a collection of Emily Dickinson’s poetry-scrawled envelopes. Read transgender author Jennifer Finney Boylan’s “Stuck in the middle with you: a memoir of parenting in three genders.” And…if you’re still looking for inspiration to get your reading started, don’t forget to check out PPL’s City of Readers lists of Contemporary Authors (Who Just Happen to be Women…) here and here.
Or find your own way, and send us your thoughts! We hope you’re looking forward to all of PPL’s new materials in 2014, and we’d love to hear from you.”
By Elizabeth Hartsigposted: , by Jim Charette