As you may have read yesterday, the acclaimed Canadian Author and Lecturer David Gilmour (not the one in Pink Floyd) ruffled a fair few feathers when he declared that he would not use books written by women as course material. He made a solitary exception, Virginia Woolf, but his insistence that female authors were somehow inferior wasn’t particularly well received.
And with good reason too. Sure, we aren’t here to judge his opinions or the merits of his arguments – you can make your own minds up about that – but maybe there is a slight generalisation in all of this. After all books, authors and styles are generally a very personal thing. Much like music, films and pretty much anything else that is remotely creative.
Therefore, without adding another oar to an argument brimming with superfluous oars, it is difficult to discard a whole genre, let alone an entire gender or race. So, in the interest of fairness, here are just a few adequate books written by ladies over the last few centuries.
The Golden Notebook – Doris Lessing
White Teeth – Zadie Smith
Oryx and Crake – Margaret Atwood
Rebecca – Daphne du Maurier
To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee
Middlemarch – George Eliot
Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte
Wuthering Heights – Emily Bronte
Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen
Bring up the Bodies – Hilary Mantel
The Bell Jar – Sylvia Plath
Hotel Du Lac – Anita Brooker
The Talented Mr Ripley – Patricia Highsmith
The Color Purple – Alice Walker
Gone with the Wind – Margaret Mitchell
Mrs Dalloway – Virginia Woolf
The Shipping News – Annie Proulx
Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe – Fannie Flagg
The God of Small Things – Arundhatri Roy
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – J.K. Rowling
Of course, these are just a few of many, many more. But we’d love for you to share your favourite book written by a lady, or indeed a Chinese author (another one of the groups Gilmour disparaged) with us at World of Books.
To make it interesting, we will be giving away a choice of 5 of the above books, plus your favourite as a prize. The Gilmour Girls competition will run until midday on Monday, when the winner will be announced. So that’s six great books for just telling us your favourite book by a female author, what could be better?
Enter on Facebook, by leaving a comment on the blog below or on Twittter using the hashtag #gilmourgirls and sending to @worldofbooksltd.
You can also choose to buy any of the above books (or any others for that matter, including extremely masculine tomes) with a cheeky 20% discount, just use the code TYPT249 to take advantage (yes, it’s the same as the one from Tuesday).
Remember, this is just a bit of fun. We would of course love your opinions on female authors and Gilmour’s comments, but are remaining staunchly on the fence with this one. Opinions are opinions after all.