March is Women’s History Month, a time to honor the women who have made strides towards gender equality and empower the next generation. One industry in which women are dominant is the publishing industry; a 2016 study revealed that women make up 78%. While women dominate the publishing industry, it’s interesting to note that only about 30% of authors today are women.
We believe that it’s time for women to make their mark even more than they already have. So, to any aspiring female authors, know that your time to shine is now. Let’s take a look at some of the most influential female authors throughout history and the achievements they’ve brought to the literary world.
Jane Austen is arguably the most famous female author of all time. She lived in the late 1700s to early 1800s and wrote incredibly influential novels, including Pride and Prejudice, Sense and Sensibility, and Emma. Austen challenged the gender roles of her day and included irony, parody, and free speech in her novels. She believed that women had as much power as men, and she was not afraid to say it. Her work has since been turned into countless movies and TV shows, resonating with women across the globe.
Virginia Wolf is another influential female author and is considered one of the most important modernist 20th-century writers. She was one of the first authors, male or female, to create a written narrative using a stream of consciousness. Two of her most famous novels are To the Lighthouse and Mrs. Dalloway.
Maya Angelou is another woman to keep on your list. As an author, poet, activist, and scholar (to name a few), Angelou is best known for creating a unique take on the typical autobiographical writing style. Her first piece, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, is an autobiography of her difficult childhood and upbringing. She describes her strength through trauma, racism, and assault. She received many awards for her influential books and poems, and her first volume of poetry, “Just Give Me a Cool Drink of Water ‘Fore I Die,” was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize award. In addition, Angelou received the Presidential Honor of Freedom, the highest honor a civilian can receive. This award honored her impact in the world of literature and the arts.
Jane Austen, Virginia Wolf, and Maya Angelou are a few of the most famous and influential authors in history, regardless of gender. They have brought so much to the world by providing us with timeless novels and creating new writing styles. So many young authors look up to these women for inspiration and as a way to challenge themselves. It takes a strong person to combat the ideas of their time, and these powerful women did that countless times.
This month, take some time to honor the women who play an essential role in your life. Whether it’s authors like these, who have written inspirational books or provided clarity under challenging times, or your mom, sister, or friends, take time to honor the accomplishments women have made throughout history and continue to make today. Our world will become a better place, and our children will have more opportunities because of powerful women like these.
If you’re interested in offering a featured Women’s History Month section in your store, reach out to us for the best titles. From the books mentioned above to pieces written by or for women, this month is a wonderful time to celebrate all that women have accomplished and continue to do.