In 2016, the Classics Club is hosting the Women’s Classic Literature Event. This year long event will have quarterly check-ins where we can share thoughts and posts. The Classics Club describes it in this way:
This event is way more a celebration than a “reading challenge.” It’s about hunting out those forgotten titles which didn’t make it into the official canon, & reading them & sharing the excitement. Or exploring the females who are in the canon.
The guidelines are simple: all genres, and we set our own goals. No preset list is required. The book should be published before 1960.
Looking at my Classics Club list, most of the women authors I have left wrote in the 60s and 70s: Toni Morrison, Isabel Allende, Alice Walker, Harper Lee, and Muriel Spark. I’ve already read books on my Classics list by Elizabeth Gaskell, Edith Wharton, George Eliot, Jane Austen, and Pearl S. Buck.
But I really enjoyed everything I’ve read by those authors, so rather than coming up with new ideas, what I propose is this:
- Read another work by Gaskell,Wharton, and Eliot (I’ve read North and South, House of Mirth, Age of Innocence, Middlemarch, and Daniel Deronda). Any suggestions?
- Read a work by Virginia Woolf (Mrs. Dalloway or Orlando).
- Re-read Jane Eyre, a book I didn’t like when I was younger but it’s got some baggage attached to it. People love this book so much, I feel like I ought to try it again.
- Re-read To Kill a Mockingbird.
I expect this list might change, depending on whether there are any group reads I decide to join. And six books is ambitious, even for a one year challenge (since I have a thesis to write at the same time). But it’s a place to start.
I can’t believe we’re already thinking about challenges for 2016! Will you be joining? What are your favorite classics written by women?