In honour of International Women’s Day, I thought it would be appropriate to acknowledge some of the most influential female authors in history. Trust me, I would have liked this list to be longer, but there is always next year.
I’m sure it comes as no surprise that J.K is part of this list. The Harry Potter novels have impacted millions of lives and is considered the most successful book series of all time. The Harry Potter universe has grown to include a range of books, films, a play, a studio tour, a theme park, an interactive website and a lot more. She has worked incredibly hard to get where she is and she only continues to inspire us.
Lee only ever wrote two books, but her huge impact on literature is clear. To Kill a Mockingbird is an incredible novel and an instant classic. She debated racial inequality and injustice in the purest way possible, through the eyes of children. Lee won a Pulitzer for the book and was in 2007 awarded a Presidential Medal of Freedom for her contribution to literature.
Jane Austen died 200 years ago this year (if you
find yourself in the proximity of Winchester, I recommend you attend the Jane Austen 200 exhibition this summer). Her writing has inspired women everywhere, and her discussion of women’s dependence in the pursuit of a socially and economically successful marriages is incredibly important. Her face will be on the new £10 note, which will be released this summer. It is clear she is one of the most influential female authors in history.
Undset was a Norwegian novelist who wrote a trilogy about a woman living in the middle ages. In 1928 she won the Nobel Prize for Literature for the series. She tackled issues such as women’s emancipation and other ethical issues. She was also catholic, which was highly unusual in Norway, a primarily Lutheran country, and she received a lot of criticism for her religion. This inspired her in her writing later and prompted her to participate in several debates, giving her the nickname “The Catholic Woman” and “The Mistress of Bjerkebæk.”
LAURA INGALLS WILDER
Wilder wrote the Little House on the Prairie series. My mother received these books when she was a child and when she passed them on to me, I fell in love instantly. It is such a compelling story and has remained one of my favourite children’s book series. Her writing would inspire many authors of children’s books later. The hit TV-series, Little House on the Prairie, from the 1970s-1980s was based on her book series.
WHICH FEMALE AUTHORS HAVE INSPIRED YOU?