Nina Ansary »Anonymous Is a Woman«

Literaturhaus Berlin
Li-Be digital English
Nina Ansary »Anonymous Is a Woman: A Global Chronicle of Gender Inequality«

The author in conversation with Daniel Schreiber

In 1929, British novelist Virginia Woolf ran her fingers along the spines of the books in her library wondering why no woman in Shakespeare’s era had written »a word of that extraordinary literature when every other man, it seemed, was capable of song or sonnet.« She concluded, »Indeed, I would venture to guess that Anon, who wrote so many poems without signing them, was often a woman.« Nearly a century after Woolf penned those incisive words, frequently modified as »For most of history, Anonymous was a woman,« the phenomenon of female anonymity persists as women worldwide continue to be restricted by society’s formal and unspoken barriers. In her latest book, Nina Ansary asks why Virginia Woolf’s statement still echoes in the twenty-first century? Why have women been consistently denied opportunities that are automatically given to men? And why has the historical record failed to adequately recognize notable women?

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