I haven’t joined a Top Ten Tuesday for a long time now and suddenly I just needed to make a list. So, I checked today’s theme and it just fits perfectly. Since this blog is mostly devoted to crime fiction and women writers/women’s representation, I would like to list the top 10 books anyone interested in feminism or women’s representation in fiction should read. Ready? Go!
November 19: Top Ten Books I’d Recommend To Anyone Interested in Feminism / Women’s Representation
Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created here at The Broke and the Bookish. This feature was created because we are particularly fond of lists here at The Broke and the Bookish. We’d love to share our lists with other bookish folks and would LOVE to see your top ten lists!
1. A Room of One’s Own by Virginia Woolf.- This can be a little bit dry but Woof deals with issues that are sadly still relevant nowadays like women’s need to own time and space (and the money to buy it) so that they can develop their creativity.
2. Alias Grace by Margaret Atwood.- Atwood is a well-known feminist writer and a genius. So, if this psychological novel with thriller features is the perfect book to get to know her huge body of work.
3. Flappers: Six Women of a Dangerous Generation by Judith Mackrell.- This book contains the biography of 6 real-life women who revolutionized the early 20th century. Is there something more inspiring than a real life role model?
4. Cranford by Elizabeth Gaskell.- Did you know that according to Dickens Elizabeth Gaskell was as good as a writer as he himself? However, she has long since lost her status. Cranford is the story of a little town populated only by women. A joy to read, also light-hearted and very optimistic.
5. Life After Life by Kate Aktinson.- Do you think I can write a TTT without mentioning Kate Atkinson? It would be impossible. In her last novel (2013) she explores the many lives of Ursula Todd who dies and is given the opportunity to live her life again as many times as she needs although she is not conscious of this. So, her life constitutes a summary of the many lives a woman born in the early 20th century could have led.
6. Anything on the Kay Scarpetta series by Patricia Cornwell .- Her books are considered the pop-corn version of crime fiction, but many fail to see that Cornwell created an inspiring, workaholic and obsessive doctor and detective that will hit home with many hard-working and modern women.
7. Behind the Scenes at the Museum by Kate Atkinson.- This novel propelled Atkinson to fame back in 1996 but also earned her some harsh criticism for her – supposed – hatred for men and desire to create aan all-female society. Totally false, but a true feminist vindication that, in my opinion, could rival Woolf’s A Room of One’s Own.
8. The Awakening by Kate Chopin.- A well-known feminist classic, this short novel explores the main’s characters ambitions beyond being a wife and a mother in the late 19th-century Southern society.
9. The Yellow Wallpaperr by Charlotte Perkins-Gillman.- Another 19th-century jewel – this time a short story available here – exploring the treatment of postpartum depression and the social, medical and personal considerations of this recently explored illness.
10. Troubled Daughters, Twisted Wives: Stories from the Trailblazers of Domestic Suspense by Sarah Weinman.- A collection of short stories by women from the mid-20th century that have now been forgotten. A pure joy.
All these works are written by women and I think it is very important for anyone willing to explore feminism and/or women’s representation to acknowledge that what we are taught men’s works and their points of view. It is then, key to explore women’s own representation of themselves, their counterparts and the society they live in.