George Sand (born Amantine-Lucile-Aurore Dupin; July 1, 1804 – June 8, 1876) was a French novelist, essayist, and playwright known for pushing the envelope on gender roles and cultural expectations. She’s also notorious for the drama in her everyday life, not the least of which was her lively love life, filled with countless romantic entanglements.
Her literary legacy includes more than seventy novels in addition to several plays, countless essays, journalistic pieces, and a multi-volume autobiography. Few authors since have matched her prolific output, and she remains a model for creating a full palette of love, productivity, and family life.
Louisa May Alcott (November 29, 1832 – March 6, 1888) is best known as the author of Little Women and its sequels, including Jo’s Boys and Little Men, though the scope of her work goes far beyond these beloved books. She also wrote essays, poems, and pseudonymous thrillers.
Alcott’s most beloved heroine, the complicated and talented Jo March, was an idealized version of herself. And she did grow up in a family much like the one she presented in Little Women — once again, idealized and a bit altered — with practical and wise Marmee, a dreamer of a father, and three sisters, May (“Amy”), Anna (“Meg”), and Elizabeth (“Beth”). Read More→
If you’d like a taste of a classic author’s work but don’t have the time or patience to read a tome, consider the novella form. Here we’ll look at novellas by classic women authors that make great introductions to to their work.
What defines a novella? It’s generally based on word count of between 17,000 and 40,000, though it isn’t always so cut and dry. The Awakening by Kate Chopin is often described as a novella, though as far as word count, it’s slightly outside that parameter. Read More→