The Guardian: V.S. Naipaul finds no woman writer his literary match----not even Jane Austen
SpeakEasy: Jane Austen Caught in Crossfire in Literary Battle of the Sexes (counter comments to V.S. Naipaul)
Nobel Prize Winner V.S. Naipaul “claims that there is no woman writer who could serve as his literary match (The Guardian)." He takes a distinctive stab at our dear Jane Austen saying she is sentimental, as are all women writers. Read the article in The Guardian here as it is very interesting.
|Am I inferior?|
Jane Austen was if anything, bound to realism in her writing. The reality of the status of women in her time or even the realities of rich vs. poor. She wrote with such wit and such prose that she made herself timeless. Her novels have become almost immortal in their presence. Jane as a woman and as a writer is not inferior. Neither are other women writers.
What about the Brontes? Were they sentimental? I hardly call the Brontes sentimental. They wrote of their own harsh reality which was far from everyday happiness. Wuthering Heights anyone? That is not exactly a sentimental, all ends well love story. It’s one of my favorite books, but I will be the first to admit that the novel is depressing and leaves you feeling angry and well….like crap.
Even in Jane Austen’s happy endings we cannot forget the poor end for Lydia Bennet having to marry poor Wickham, Willoughby giving up Marianne for the money and security offered by Miss Grey, Miss Thorpe losing James Morland because she was unfaithful, Miss Bates lonely existence or Charlotte Lucas’ practical marriage to the odious Mr. Collins. If these outcomes are sentimental then I would hate to see what reality actually is.
Well Mr. Naipaul you are entitled to your opinion, but I respectfully disagree. As a woman and as a writer I am neither sentimental or inferior, I just have a different perspective than you.
What are your thoughts my dear readers? Are women writers inferior to male writers? Are women writers just sentimental?