Why it’s important that female authors are discussed.

by | Blog Post

At Women’s Writes, we’re committed to celebrating female authors and their achievements. The journey to publishing can be much longer for some women, especially those who choose to balance their career goals with family life. Female authorship has, and continues to be, discriminated against. Women are generally paid less and are criticised heavily by certain males who are determined to undermine their work[1]. This is why acknowledging and embracing work by female authors and academics is so important whilst the issue of casual sexism still exist within society.

An issue that is undermining the position of female authors and academics in society is the incorrect use of titles in mainstream media. For example, in a tweet by BBC journalist Laura Kuenssberg, the journalist refers to Professor Dame Angela McLean as ‘deputy chief scientific advisor Angela McLean’ after introducing her male colleague as Professor Whitty. Even worse, some female writers are not receiving credit at all. Sarah Milov wrote a historical non-fiction book which was discussed on the radio by two male historians – her name and the name of her book was not mentioned at all[2].

Why are female authors and academics not receiving the same recognition as their male colleagues?

One explanation is subconscious inferiority. In relation to the above example of Sarah Milov, is it possible that the men who talked about her work were unwilling to admit that the ideas had come from the mind of a woman? It would not surprise me if they were worried about the backlash of chauvinist comments. However, that is still not an excuse. Social equality will never be achieved whilst we worry about the opinion of small-minded individuals.

Additionally, research has found that gender bias exists amongst scientific journal editors. Invitations to write papers are given less often to women than men and women were less likely to hold authorship in senior positions[3].

Or is it pure sloppiness that females are not given the same recognition? Perhaps it is believed that women are less likely to speak up and address the incorrect use of titles. The traditional stereotype of a woman is encouraged to avoid dominance, however feminism is encouraging women to claim their recognition that is rightfully owed to them. In the ideal world of social equality, there is no room for sloppiness.

Where do we go from here?

If you’re dedicated to supporting female authors, you’re going to love our new membership options that we recently launched! By purchasing a membership, you’re encouraging paid work for female writers, donating to a charity voted on by you and allowing a space that speaks up for social justice to keep running. Get involved with our exclusive author events and you could even treat yourself to a new book every month – our members love receiving their books in the post!

If you’re unable to become a member, don’t worry. We’re still hosting free events because we understand the importance of sharing female authorship with everyone. As the lack of representation continues, it’s essential that communities like Women’s Writes exist. Recognition of female authorship helps to break the social inequalities surrounding this field and Women’s Writes is dedicated to promoting important literature which challenges the status quo.

Words by Charlotte Smith, Take a Paws

[1] A Rageful Cry against Sexism in Authorship by Anna Faktorovich
[2] https://www.thelily.com/a-female-historian-wrote-a-book-two-male-historians-went-on-npr-to-talk-about-it-they-never-mentioned-her-name/
[3] Holman, Stuart-Fox & Hauser (2018) The gender gap in science: How long until women are equally represented?

 

Pin It on Pinterest