A Life of One's Own

Joanna Biggs


We send all orders via Royal Mail: within the UK, choose from 1st Class, 2nd Class or Special Delivery; for the rest of the world, International Standard or International Tracked. Delivery and packaging charges are calculated automatically at the checkout.

To collect orders in person from the Bookshop, choose Click and Collect at the checkout.

Orion Publishing Co
9 May 2024
ISBN: 9781474621243
272 pages

From the publisher

A piercing blend of memoir, criticism and biography examining how women writers across the centuries carved out intellectual freedom for themselves, and how others might do the same - 'A compelling anti-guide to art and life' Literary Review

'A beautiful, deeply philosophical book about reading as a form of existential consolation' Literary Review
'Acute and tender . . . alive with discovery and desire' Observer
'A meditation, by turns glorious and aching, on what it means to be a woman and to try to be free' Amia Srinivasan
'A gift to readers of all ages. Engaging . . . poignant . . . uplifting' Washington Post
'I adored this book . . . a generous, enlivening work, destined to be passed from friend to friend for a long time to come' Megan Hunter

In this intricate, intimate and dazzlingly original group biography, Joanna Biggs looks to eight revolutionary women writers who each sought freedom and intellectual fulfilment in their lifetimes and asks: why is it so important for women to read one another? By illuminating the motivations, desires and disappointments of Mary Wollstonecraft, George Eliot, Zora Neale Hurston, Virginia Woolf, Simone de Beauvoir, Sylvia Plath, Toni Morrison and Elena Ferrante, Biggs lights a way past the traditional goals and expectations of femininity and towards a life lived generously and joyfully for oneself.