In her group biography Lyndall Gordon links five female novelists, Mary Shelley, Emily Brontë, George Eliot, Olive Schreiner and Virginia Woolf. Is their status as outsiders and the fact that all five were motherless during crucial periods of their development related to their genius? What is indisputable is that all five had crucial roles to play in writing women’s voices into the history of the English-speaking world. Lyndall Gordon discusses what all five writers had in common and their unconventional lives with Joan Bakewell, pioneering broadcaster, journalist, novelist and memoirist.
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