In 1929, British novelist Virginia Woolf ran her fingers along the spines of the books in her library wondering why no woman in Shakespeare’s era had written “a word of that extraordinary literature when every other man, it seemed, was capable of song or sonnet.” She concluded, “Indeed, I would venture to guess that Anon, who wrote so many poems without signing them, was often a woman.”
Nearly a century after Woolf penned those incisive words, frequently modified as “For most of history, Anonymous was a woman,” the phenomenon of female anonymity persists as women worldwide continue to be restricted by society’s formal and unspoken barriers.
Why does Virginia Woolf’s statement still echo in the twenty-first century?
Why have women been consistently denied opportunities that are automatically given to men?
And why has the historical record failed to adequately recognize notable women?
Anonymous Is a Woman: A Global Chronicle of Gender Inequality takes readers on a 4,000-year historic journey to expose the roots and manifestations of institutionalized gender discrimination; dismantle centuries of historical bias through biographical profiles of fifty remarkable, yet forgotten women innovators; and challenge ingrained stereotypical assumptions to advance an unconventional argument for equality and inclusivity.