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The earliest known printed book with illustrations by a woman October 8, 2012

Her name was Geronima Parasole and she lived in Rome in the late 16th century. She signed her work with her initials – ‘G.A.P’. Her woodcuts for a Italian translation of a book on Roman coins was published in 1592, making it very likely to be the first illustrations by a woman to appear in a book. Research shows that in the sixteenth century only 35 women are known to have been artists with Geronima…

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A New Home for Nordic Women Writers March 8, 2012

Today is International Women’s Day and one way to celebrate is to visit the newly launched website dedicated to Nordic women writers. The site spans 1000 years of literature and features hundreds of articles on 800 writers. “The story begins in Iceland during the transition from oral narrative tradition to the introduction of written culture. And it ends with a chapter on Sami and Greenlandic women’s conquest of written language in our own time.”  Karen…

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If Mme Sévigné Used Email Would Her Daughter Have Begged For Mercy? February 12, 2010

A widowed marquise of the French nobility, she was devoted to her children. When her daughter married and moved away, she became despondent. Loneliness prompted her to begin writing letters to Françoise Marguerite, a correspondence that by her death had numbered an estimated 1,700 epistles. It is the “most intimate and sustained chronicle of a mother-daughter relationship ever recorded” (New Oxford Companion to Literature in French). “After her daughter had gone to Provence, Sevigne was…

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Skirts In Dust Jackets: Indie Women, Wayward Wives, Soiled Damsels, Sassy Lassies, and Hard-Boiled Dames January 25, 2010

Meherin, Elenore. “Sandy.” Gosset & Dunlap, 1926.“She defied life’s Conventions in her search for THRILLS!” Photoplay edition. Women on the move, on the make, on the day shift, on the night shift, on their feet, on their backs, on the go, on their way, onward and upward. Sometimes a rare book catalog is organized like a library exhibition, the dealer/cataloger as curator to a wide variety of books that when grouped together tell a compelling…

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