Audre_Lorde,_Meridel_Lesueur,_Adrienne_Rich_1980

At this year’s Los Angeles AWP (Association of Writers and Writing Programs), Jeanetta Calhoun Mish, Leslie Samuels Entsminger, Jan Freeman, Renee Olander, and myself participated in a panel called Literary Foremothers and Filling the Gaps. We wanted to honor women writers who have influenced our writing. Renee teaches women’s literature at Old Dominion University and built a substantial lifetime reading list of women writers for her class. Each of us added several of our own favorite books.

That list, far from complete, follows.

Fiction:
Maya Angelou – I KNOW WHY THE CAGED BIRD SINGS 1969

Isabel Allende – THE HOUSE OF THE SPIRITS (1985 first English edition)

Dorothy Allison – BASTARD OUT OF CAROLINA (1992)

Julia Alvarez – HOW THE GARCIA GIRLS LOST THEIR ACCENTS (1991)

Margaret Atwood – THE HANDMAID’S TALE (1985)

Sanora Babb – WHOSE NAMES ARE UNKNOWN (1939/2006)

Muriel Barbery – THE ELEGANCE OF THE HEDGEHOG (2008

Charlotte Brontë – JANE EYRE (1847)

Aphra Behn – OROONOKO OR THE ROYAL SLAVE (1688)

Frances Hodgson Burnett – THE SECRET GARDEN (1911)

Ana Castillo –SO FAR FROM GOD (1993)

Kate Chopin – THE AWAKENING (1899)

Sandra Cisneros –THE HOUSE ON MANGO STREET (1991)

Collette – THE VAGABOND (1910; first English edition 1955)

Denise Chávez – THE LAST OF THE MENU GIRLS (1986)

Tory Dent – BLACK MILK (2005)

Rebecca Harding Davis – “Life in the Iron-Mills” (1861)

George Eliot (Mary Ann Evans) – THE MILL ON THE FLOSS (1860)

Louise Erdrich – LOVE MEDICINE (1984)

Louise Erdrich – THE LAST REPORT ON THE MIRACLES FROM LITTLE NO-HORSE (2001)

Laura Esquivel – LIKE WATER FOR CHOCOLATE (1989)

Shirley Jackson – “The Lottery” (1948)

Sue Monk Kidd – THE INVENTION OF WINGS (2014)

Barbara Kingsolver – LACUNA (2009)

Maxine Hong Kingston – THE WOMAN WARRIOR (1976)

Charlotte Perkins Gilman – HERLAND (1915)

Zora Neale Hurston – MOSES, MAN OF THE MOUNTAIN (1939)

Zora Neale Hurston – THEIR EYES WERE WATCHING GOD (1937)

Erica Jong – FEAR OF FLYING (1973)

Nella Larsen – PASSING (1929)

Nella Larsen – QUICKSAND (1928)

Ursula LeGuin –THE LEFT HAND OF DARKNESS (1969)

Ursula LeGuin – THE DISPOSSESSED (1974)

Ursula LeGuin – “THE ONES WHO WALKED AWAY FROM OMELAS” (1975)

Meridel LeSueur –THE GIRL Included in Ripening: Selected Work (1939/1978/1990)

Meridel LeSueur –“Annunciation.” Included in Ripening: Selected Work (1939/1978/1990)

Angeles Mastretta – TEAR THIS HEART OUT (ARRÁNCAME LA VIDA, 1985; first English edition 1997)

Toni Morrison – THE BLUEST EYE (1970)

Toni Morrison – BELOVED (1987)

Toni Morrison – SONG OF SOLOMON (1977)

Toni Morrison – JAZZ (1992)

Toni Morrison – SULA (1973)

Joyce Carol Oates – THEM (1969)

Flannery O’Connor – “A Good Man is Hard to Find” (1955)

Flannery O’Connor – “Revelation” (1965)

Tillie Lerner Olsen – “I Stand Here Ironing (1961)”

http://producer.csi.edu/cdraney/2010/278/

resources/olsen_ironing.pdf

Tillie Lerner Olsen: – “Tell Me a Riddle.” (1962/1995)

Tillie Lerner Olsen – YONNONDIO (1930s/1974)

Grace Paley – THE LITTLE DISTURBANCES OF MAN: STORIES OF WOMEN AND MEN AT LOVE (1959, republished as THE LITTLE DISTURBANCES OF MAN, 1980)

Grace Paley – ENORMOUS CHANGES AT THE LAST MINUTE(1974)

Dorothy Parker – HERE LIES: THE COLLECTED STORIES OF DOROTHY PARKER (1939)

Anne Petry – THE STREET (1946)

Marge Piercy – WOMAN ON THE EDGE OF TIME (1976)

Marge Piercy – VIDA (1980)

Sylvia Plath – THE BELL JAR (pen name Victoria Lucas, 1963)

Harriet Beecher Stowe – UNCLE TOM’S CABIN (1852) & DRED (1856)

Amy Tan – THE JOY LUCK CLUB (1989)

Yvonne Vera – BUTTERFULY BURNING (1998)

Alice Walker – THE COLOR PURPLE (1982)

Eudora Welty – “A Worn Path” (1941)

Eudora Welty – A CURTAIN OF GREEN AND OTHER STORIES (1941)

Edith Wharton – AGE OF INNOCENCE (1920)

Edith Wharton – ETHAN FROME (1911)

Virginia Woolf – “A Haunted House” (1921)

Virginia Woolf – TO THE LIGHTHOUSE (1927)

Virginia Woolf – THE WAVES (1931)
Nonfiction:

Paula Gunn Allen – THE SACRED HOOP (1986)

Gloria Anzaldúa –BORDERLANDS/LA FRONTERA (1987)

Julia Alvarez – IN THE TIME OF THE BUTTERFLIES (1994)

Sanora Babb – ON THE DIRTY PLATE TRAIL: REMEMBERING THE DUST BOWL

REFUGEE CAMPS (1930s/2007)

Helene Cixous – COMING TO WRITING AND OTHER ESSAYS (1977/1991)

Toi Derricotte – THE BLACK NOTEBOOKS (1997)

Annie Dillard – PILGRIM AT TINKER CREEK (1974)

Marilyn French – BEYOND POWER: ON WOMEN, MEN AND MORALS (1986)

Roxanne Gay – BAD FEMINIST (2015)

Susan Griffin – WHAT HER BODY THOUGHT (2003)

belle hooks – WOUNDS OF PASSION: A WRITING LIFE (1997)

belle hooks – FEMINISM IS FOR EVERYBODY: PASSIONATE POLITICS (2000)

belle hooks – WHERE WE STAND: CLASS MATTERS (2000)

Harriet Jacobs (pen name Linda Brent) – INCIDENTS IN THE LIFE OF A SLAVE GIRL (1861)

June Jordan – TECHNICAL DIFFICULTIES: AFRICAN AMERICAN NOTES ON THE

STATE OF THE UNION (1981)

June Jordan – SOME OF US DID NOT DIE: NEW AND SELECTED ESSAYS OF JUNE

JORDAN (2002)

James King – VIRGINIA WOOLF (biography, 1994)

Meridel LeSueur –WOMEN ON THE BREADLINES Included in Ripening: Selected Work

(1932/1990)

Michelle Knight – FINDING ME: A DECADE OF DARKNESS, A LIFE RECLAIMED (2014)

Audre Lorde – SISTER OUTSIDER (1984)

Audre Lorde – THE CANCER JOURNALS (1980)

Mina Loy – “Feminist Manifesto.” https://oncomouse.github.io/loy/feminist.html

Eileen Myles – CHELSEA GIRLS (1994)

Tillie Lerner Olsen –SILENCES (1978)

Octavio Paz – SOR JUANA: OR, THE TRAPS OF FAITH (biography of Sor Juana Ines de la

Cruz, 1988)

Lola Ridge – “WomAn and the Creative Will.” (1919/2008) http://quod.lib.umich.edu/m/mfs/

Muriel Rukeyser – THE LIFE OF POETRY (1949, 1996)

Elizabeth Cady Stanton – A DECLARATION OF SENTIMENTS (1948)

Cheryl Strayed – WILD (2012)

Alice Walker – IN SEARCH OF OUR MOTHER’S GARDENS: WOMANIST PROSE (1983)

Mary Wollstonecraft – A VINDICATION OF THE RIGHTS OF WOMAN (1792)

Virginia Woolf – A ROOM OF ONE’S OWN (1929)

Virginia Woolf – ON BEING ILL (1930)

Virginia Woolf – THREE GUINEAS (1938)

Virginia Woolf – “The Death of a Moth” (1942, 1 year posthumous)

Poetry:

Elizabeth Bishop – GEOGRAPHY III (1976)

Gwendolyn Brooks –THE WORLD OF GWENDOLYN BROOKS (1971)

Anne Carson – AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF RED (1998)

Nina Cassian – LIFE SENTENCE: SELECTED POEMS (1991)

Lorna Dee Cervantes – EMPLUMADA (1981)

Lorna Dee Cervantes – FROM THE CABLES OF GENOCIDE: POEMS ON LOVE AND HUNGER (1991)

Franny Choi – “Pussy Monster” – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sunQ9UxZsZ8

Jayne Cortez – “Rape” – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ig4ItmFlKTg (2011)

Jayne Cortez – “If The Drum Is A Woman” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZYV9_zSs-DU (1982)

Emily Dickinson (1830-1886) – “Because I could not stop for Death” (1951)

Emily Dickinson (1830-1886) – “Much madness is divinist Sense” (1951)

Emily Dickinson (1830-1886) – “Some keep the Sabbath going to Church” (1951)

Emily Dickinson (1830-1886) – “Tell all the Truth but tell it Slant” (1951)

Emily Dickinson (1830-1886) – “This is my letter to the World” (1951)

Emily Dickinson (1830-1886) – “This world is not Conclusion” (1951)

Emily Dickinson (1830-1886) – “Wild Nights, Wild Nights—” (1951)

Emily Dickinson (1830-1886) –COLLECTED POEMS (Ed. by Franklin, 1998)

Rita Dove – Thomas_and_Beulah (1986)

Claudia Emerson – LATE WIFE (2006)

Diane Gilliam Fisher – KETTLE BOTTOM (2004)

Judy Grahn – THE WORK OF A COMMON WOMAN (1964-1977)

H.D. – TRILOGY (1917-1944)

belle hooks – APPALACHIAN ELEGY: POETRY AND PLACE (2012)

Lyn Hejinian – MY LIFE (2002)

Gray Jacobik – LITTLE BOY BLUE: A MEMOIR IN VERSE (2011)

June Jordan – LIVING ROOM (1985)

June Jordan – PASSION, NEW POEMS 1977-1980 (1980)

Maxine Kumin – OUR GROUND TIME HERE WILL BE BRIEF: NEW AND SELECTED POEMS (1982)

Dorianne Laux – SMOKE (2000)

Dorianne Laux – WHAT WE CARRY (1994)

Audre Lorde – UNDERSONG: POEMS OLD AND NEW(1992)

Marcia Falk – THE SONG OF SONGS: LOVE LYRICS FROM THE BIBLE, A New

Translation –(1973, 1993)

Mina Loy – THE LAST LUNAR BAEDEKER (1923-1958)

Mina Loy – THE LOST LUNAR BAEDEKER (1923-1958)

Sharon Olds – THE GOLD CELL (1987)

Mary Oliver – AMERICAN PRIMITIVE (1983)

Tillie Lerner Olsen – “I Want ¥ou Women Up North to Know” (1934/1987). Included in Writing Red: An Anthology of American Women Writers, 1930-1940

Marge Piercy – TO BE OF USE (1973)

Marge Piercy – THE MOON IS ALWAYS FEMALE (1980)

Sylvia Plath – ARIEL (1966, 3 years posthumous, edited by Ted Hughes)

Sylvia Plath – ARIEL: THE RESTORED EDITION (2004, edited with a foreword by Freida Hughes)

Sylvia Plath – THE COLLECTED POEMS (2008)

Adrienne Rich – THE WILL TO CHANGE: POEMS 1968-1970 (1971)

Adrienne Rich – DIVING INTO THE WRECK (1973)

Adrienne Rich – AN ATLAS OF THE DIFFICULT WORLD: POEMS 1988-1991 (1991)

Lola Ridge – THE GHETTO http://www.writing.upenn.edu/~afilreis/88/ghetto.html

Lola Ridge –SUN-UP AND OTHER POEMS http://www.writing.upenn.edu/~afilreis/88/sunup.html

Muriel Rukeyser – THE COLLECTED POEMS (2005)

Sappho – SAPPHO; A NEW TRANSLATION (Translated by Mary Barnard 1958)

Ntozake Shange (b. Paulette Williams) – “With No Immediate Cause” (2006)

Gertrude Stein – THE YALE GERTRUDE STEIN (1980)

Ruth Stone – IN AN IRIDESCENT TIME (1996)

Ruth Stone – SIMPLICITY (1959)

May Swenson – IN OTHER WORDS (1987)

May Swenson – NEW AND SELECTED THINGS TAKING PLACE(1978)

Natasha Trethewey – NATIVE GUARD (2006)

Cecilia Vicuna – UNRAVELING WORDS AND THE WEAVING OF WATER (1992)

Anne Waldman – FAST SPEAKING WOMAN (1975)

Anne Waldman – MANATEE/HUMANITY (2009)

 

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