Why do women writers choose to write about feminism?

“In a culture where individualism and protest remain alien ideas for women, a few women writers have managed to leave an indelible imprint on women-centric issues.”

Being a Woman.

“ She is like the surface of glass.  True and transparent. You see the inside.

The more you gently wipe it, the more it will shine.

You see your own reflection in it, as if she shyly preserves your image inside her.

You break the glass one day; she shatters into tiny pieces. 

Difficult to collect, difficult to mend.  She will never be the way she was.

Each time you pass your hand over the fracture, scars and a disfigured image would be all you feel.

Yet she will forgive and rise like a phoenix.  Such is her spirit! 

She is trained to survive the odds.  Being a woman is an art! ”

A woman is described in myriad ways.  But does this bring justice to her being…is a question that remains?  She has feminism, women empowerment and an unending list of issues to focus on. “Women write women”…which essentially means…women writers write on women-centric issues to bring focus and awareness to these areas. The pen might speak louder than the sword, and allow their voices to be heard, is how women writers can extend support to women

Why do women writers focus on writing about women?

Literature often reflects the phases of transition passing through our society.  Nothing seems to hold true for a long time.   Feminism is a part of this transitory  journey.  It challenges the patriarchal thoughts in society.  Feminism is the fight to define, establish and achieve equal political, social, economic and personal rights for women. 

Women writers have been able to create interesting imprints that successfully expose the oppression inflicted on women in the society.  Through their writings, they reveal the fact that society requires a ground breaking change to look at the ills of a women. Women writers have managed to explore the feminine consciousness, their evolution towards an awakened conscience and how they have managed to enrich their existence in a male dominated society. 

Why are women writers more impactful with their writings when compared to male writers?

The awakening of feminism-focused writing can be traced back to the 19th century. 

This period witnessed the emergence of awareness in women to fight for their rights – the  “Suffragette Movement” being one such.   Suffragette’s were the members of a women’s organisation in the late 19th century.   They fought for women suffrage, under the banner “ Votes for Women”, that is the right to vote in public elections.

It was during this phase that women became literary activists.  From the beginning of this movement, writing helped women share with other women their outrage at patriarchy.   Since then, the women writers have given voice to their problems.  Women writers can closely relate to the experiences, feelings, desires and  aspirations of women.  A female writer is the hero who can verbalise the women’s perspective and her work lends to their emancipation.

Can the ringmaster do enough justice while expressing the agony a tamed lion goes through?  Such is the case when a male writer tries to pen down the emotions of women sufferings.  A male writer can certainly feel a connection to the pain but a women touches the soul of the expression out of her experience!

Themes of feminism – A feministic approach

The views of a few novelists are written below.  We have several women writers who write on feminism.  They use their writing to speak about feminism in their own unique way.

Nayantara Sahgal

Nayantara Sahgal’s work has a strong realistic base.  She places her women characters in rebellion against unjust society and depicts the struggle.

Her writings rebel against the idea of women treated as a mere possession.

She examines in her novels the realistic domestic life and portrays their desire to freedom from social shackles.


Image Credits: livemint

The achievement of Nayantara Sahgal as a writer is quiet an impressive one.  She has made her mark with her seven novels, a few of which are, “A Time To Be Happy”, “This Time Of Morning”, “Storm In Chandigarh”, “The Day In Shadow” , “Rich Like Us”, “A Situation In New Delhi”, “Plans For Departure”.


Kamala Markandaya

She is regarded as the most outstanding novelist who deals with “Feminism”.

The process of modernisation and the traditional way of life is a recurring theme in her novels.

Her first novel, “Nectar in a Sieve ” remains her most popular work.  Later works by her includes “A Handful of Rice”, “The Coffee Dam”, “The Nowhere Man”, “Two Virgins”, “The Golden Honeycomb” and “Pleasure City”.

Image Credits: wikimedia

Anita Desai

She chooses to focus on the conflict of the mind.

The interesting part about her work is that she observes social reality from a psychological plane.

She has written many novels. Some of her important novels are “Cry the Peacock”, “Bye Bye Blackbird”, “In Custody”, “Fire on the Mountain”, “Voices in the City” and “A Village by the Sea”.




Image Credits: gstatic


Conclusion :

“You can catch the sight of the sky through the window
But the window is not the sky!”

                                                                       Image credits: wikipedia

It is easy to have an insight about things, even easier to discuss them.  But it’s a long struggle that we have to go through in order to reach the sky of freedom of choice, equality, dignity and respect for women.

A female writer unmasks the objectionable aspects of contemporary life for women.  Their work awakens rage, fear, anger, revolt against women being  dominated.  A women centric approach – an approach that debunks the myth that a women is to be a caged in boundaries and considers the viewpoint of women sensitivity.

The voice behind this article is Ashwini Gaikwad, Content Writer, Investronaut.