Sophie Treadwell (1885-1970) was an American playwright and journalist of Mexican
heritage. Her most famous work, the 1928 play Machinal, is often
included in anthologies as an example of an expressionist or modernist play.
She was a dedicated feminist and
suffragist, also advocating for sexual liberation and birth control rights. Her
writing career spanned more than six decades, and seven of her plays were staged
Jan Morris (b.
1926) is a Welsh author and historian. She is best known for her Pax Britannica
trilogy, a comprehensive history of the British Empire.
Assigned male at birth, she underwent surgery in
1972 and published the autobiography Conundrum two years later, one of
the first books to discuss the personal experience of a trans person. She
received the Golden PEN Award for a “Lifetime’s Distinguished Service to
Literature” in 2005.
Flora Brovina (b. 1949) is a poet and women’s rights activist from Kosovo. She
also studied medicine and worked as a paediatrician in the Pristina General Hospital.
Before the Kosovo War, she ran a health
clinic which also served as a shelter for orphaned children. She was abducted
and imprisoned during the war, only released as a result of international
pressure. Among the prizes she has received are the PEN/Barbara Goldsmith
Freedom to Write Award and the Human Rights Award of the Heinrich Böll Foundation.
Tove Jansson (1914-2001) was a Finnish author and illustrator. She is best known
for her Moomin children books, that became internationally famous and
She studied arts and design in Stockholm and
Paris, and had her first solo exhibition in 1943. She wrote the first Moomin book
two years later. In 1966 she received the Hans Christiansen Award, the highest
recognition for a writer or illustrator of children’s books.
Monique Wittig (1935-2003) was a French writer and feminist theorist. Her novels exclusively
depict women and are considered feminist and lesbian classics.
She has written numerous novels, short stories
and essays, mostly dealing with feminist themes. She is a main theorist of
material feminism and coined the phrase ‘heterosexual contract’, where the patriarchal
society exists as a result of the norms existing between men and women.
Alice Munro (b.
1931) is a Canadian writer. She is best known for winning the Nobel Prize for
Literature in 2013.
She is a short story writer, and has
published numerous collections over a career spanning more than four decades. Her
works have won the Governor General’s Award for Fiction, Canada’s most
important literary prize, three times, as well as the Man Booker International
Prize in 2009.