Here they come, one after the other, through the walls, the ceilings, the pages in new and old editions of books we bring to bed with us. They can come through to our side of events because they left doors for themselves before they left and we can’t help but fall hopelessly in love with those doors.
George Eliot (a woman), Charlotte Bronté (Jane Eyre), Jane Austen (Proud however unprejuidiced), Katherine Mansfield (Life is…isn’t it? Yes, yes it is, Katherine), Virginia Woolf (pretending life is a globe, which we can turn around in our fingers) Angela Carter (Nora? Dora? Both), Margaret Atwood (ecstasy as a way to escape the body *through* the body), Jeanette Winterson (revealing what she values by risking its existence), Ali Smith (Wearing both masks simultaneously as a way to get rid of both).
This army of literature was created by women. To take this army through time and call it feminist would be redundant, or rather a way of calling literature by men masculinist. Why should the latter be absurd, and not the latter?
It is no soft matter that a recent poll by the BBC reveals British women as the “leaders” (if you will) of British Literature. And why not?
My aim with this piece was not to empower women or even myself or even to remind women, that yes, in certain areas of life and art, they are more accomplished.
Which is why I personally in the majority read the British literature of women as opposed to men. Perhaps I am missing out; time will tell.
But why pursue anything but the finest.
NB With this image I hoped to create a metaphor for the army mentioned above, moving in light.