Black Women Essayists

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And why does a writer like me — female, feminist, familiar with the discreet and overt forms of sexism in the literary world and beyond — bristle when presented with such a query, one undoubtedly intended to celebrate rather than diminish the achievements of a category of people I admire and to which I belong?

Probably because I’m of the opinion that as long as we still have reason to wedge “women” as a qualifier before “essayist,” the age is not exactly golden. Essayists who happen to be women are having a banner year.

We've tried to stick to authors who are still alive—so David Foster Wallace and Christopher Hitchens are off the table, though they both would have made this list with flying colors were they still with us—and limited ourselves to American writers, but even with those caveats, there is enough in these writers' oeuvres to keep you up and thinking for weeks on end.

Each week in Bookends, two writers take on questions about the world of books.

There are thousand of females working as essayists in the world, but this list highlights only the most notable ones.

Historic essayists have worked hard to become the best that they can be, so if you're a female aspiring to be a essayist then the people below should give you inspiration.Is it even credible to use the phrase “men essayists”?Why does it sound incorrect in a way that “women essayists” doesn’t?Since leaving Bangladesh in 1994 on account of threat calls, she has lived in many countries; as of June 2011 she lives in New Delhi.She works to build support for secular humanism, freedom of thought, equality for women, and human rights by publishing, lecturing, and campaigning.She joined New York University's Creative Writing Program as a tenured professor on 1 September 2010.Smith has won the Orange Prize for Fiction and the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award in 2006 and her novel White Teeth was included in Time magazine's TIME 100 Best English-language Novels from 1923 to 2005 list.List of famous female essayists, listed by their level of prominence with photos when available.This greatest female essayists list contains the most prominent and top females known for being essayists.Both books were by authors who were mostly unknown to a wider general audience but beloved by many who frequent the literary orbit that has grown on the Internet over the past half-dozen years.It’s a generally supportive group of writers, booksellers, online magazine editors and avid fans who track the daily offerings on websites like The Rumpus, Mc Sweeney’s, The Millions, Slate and Salon, and then go to their own social media pages to post what they love or loathe.


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