New Author Entries
- Rose Hickman, 1526-1613: Protestant middle-class Londoner whose memoirs of the turbulent Reformation years were preserved by her descendants as “Certaine old storyes recorded by an aged gentlewoman”.
- Sarah, Lady Cowper, 1644-1723: diarist, commonplace-book writer, and abridger (for a daughter-in-law) of a history of the world from biblical times to the present.
- Mary, Countess Cowper, 1685-1724: like her mother-in-law a diarist, in her case of life at Court. She destroyed much of her text when anxious about possible repercussions. Odd that though she mentions her birthday in her diary no published source gives her a more precise birthdate than the year alone.
- J. S. Anna Liddiard, c. 1780 -c. 1820: Irish poet, who writes like an Irish nationalist about British politics and like a British patriot about European issues.
- Fanny Kingsley, 1814-91: devoted muse to her husband Charles Kingsley, who after his death compiled a biography of him and four different selections of his writings.
- Isabella Ormston Ford, 1855-1922: activist in the causes of socialism and feminism (which she saw as indissolubly linked) and pacifism. She published novels and short stories as well as informative, polemical journalism and pamphlets.
- Kate Parry Frye, 1878-1959: suffragist, playwright, and recently rediscovered diarist.
- Muriel Jaeger, 1892-1969: one of the least known but not least interesting of the Somerville College novelists. Her novels present innovative and controversial ideas in the guise of science-fiction; her plays and non-fiction (biography, politics, psychology) are equally thought-provoking.
- Anne Sexton, 1928-74: American poet whose often anguished personal writing, vividly imagistic, explores the psychic damage often inflicted on women by the gendered power-relations of the mid twentieth century.
- Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin, born 1942: Irish poet, translator, scholar and critic, co-founder and co-editor of the journal Cyphers.
Living writers have as usual provoked a good deal of revision to the textbase. They have contributed to the press (just a few of these are Margaret Atwood, A. S. Byatt, Hilary Mantel, Jeanette Winterson). They have published new books as disparate as Elaine Feinstein‘s It Goes with the Territory, Jane Gardam‘s The Stories, Kathleen Jamie‘s Frissure, Judith Kazantzis‘, Sister Invention, and Sara Maitland‘s Moss Witch. Atwood (again!) has had an opera produced, based on the amazing E. Pauline Johnson. Others (like Hilary Mantel) have publications heralded though not yet out. Even the non-living have new publications: Samuel Beckett, Echo’s Bones, written 1933, was first published in 2014.
- Anne Askew: David Harsent’s “Fire: a song for Mistress Askew” demonstrates her continuing power to inspire.
- Jane Austen: word of new endorsements for the Rice portrait, and less appealingly of Hyde Park’s fibreglass statue of Colin Firth as Darcy groin-deep in water, and Nicholas Ennos’s book purporting to prove that Eliza de Feuillide wrote the novels.
- Beryl Bainbridge: a chance to see her visual art in a small exhibition at King’s College, London.
- Margaret Cavendish: Siri Hustvedt paid her the silent compliment of borrowing a Cavendish title for her new novel (about a woman artist of outlandish appearance, whose husband’s surname is Lord) The Blazing World. Few noticed the title.
- Kate Clanchy: belated notice of her story “The Not-Dead and the Saved”, 2009.
- Elaine Feinstein: details added (and on other writers too) from her memoir It Goes with the Territory, 2013.
- Caroline Herschel: an exhibition devoted to her (rather than to her brother or nephew) at the Herschel Museum of Astronomy in Bath.
- Ruth Padel: her “Seven Words and an Earthquake” (new words for Haydn’s quartet Opus 51, a meditation on Christ’s “Seven Last Words” from the cross) had its first performance in March 2014.
- Ruth Rendell: added, courtesy of Deborah Kennedy’s Poetic Sisters, Rendell‘s remarkable allusion to Anne Finch‘s “Trail All Your Pikes” (written around three hundred years before) in The Monster in the Box, 2009.
- Mary Shelley: her inscribed copy of Frankenstein given to Byron turned up among the papers of the late Douglas Jay, politician, and was bought by a private collector for more than £350,000.
- Stevie Smith: the revival at Chichester Festival of Hugh Whitemore’s excellent play about her and her poetry.
- Jane Taylor: from Michael Rosen, information about the tune of “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star”.
- Violet Trefusis: changes made in the light of the official website posted by Tiziana Masucci.
- Lady Mary Wroth: the staged reading by the Globe Theatre company of her Love’s Victory at Penshurst in June 2014.
Newly added free-standing events cover publications by male writers, the lifetimes of little magazines, and of course the selection of the year 2014 by Joanna Walsh and others as a year for redressing an intellectual deficit by reading female writers exclusively. These “new” events run from Thomas Aquinas to the legalization of same-sex marriage in Britain.
Enhanced background material includes expanded information on the history of philanthropy and of publishing regulations..
Summary of Content
10 entries (8 British women writers and 2 other women writers); 28 new free-standing chronology entries; 251 new bibliographical listings; 77,167 new tags; 19,924 new words (exclusive of tags).