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In this powerful new collection, the author of two of the most celebrated memoirs in recent years presents the autobiographical writings of 14 of her English-speaking predecessors and contemporaries. The women who tell their stories in Written By Herself, Vol. II represent three generations, four continents, and a range of experience that is equaled only by the diversity with which they transform life into literature.
Here are England's Vera Brittain, commemorating the deaths of the men she loved in the carnage of World War I; Emma Mashinini, who endured imprisonment and torture as a labor organizer in South Africa; Vijaya Lakshmi Pandit, the daughter of Indian aristocracy who became an architect of her country's independence; and Edith Mirante, the wisecracking American whose passion for justice took her to the opium trails of Burma. Collected in this stirring volume, their voices demonstrate the ways in which women strive for power, inclusion, and autonomy-- and never fail to move, inspire, and instruct us.
Contributors and excerpts include:
Margery Perham, from "African Apprenticeship"
Isak Dinesen, from "Out of Africa"
Shudha Mazumdar, from "Memoirs of an Indian Woman"
Vivian Gornick, from "Fierce Attachments"
Vera Brittain, from "Testament of Youth"
Elspeth Huxley, from "The Flames of Thika"
Vijaya Lakshmi Pandit, from "The Scope of Happiness"
Gloria Wade-Gayles, "Pushed Back to Strength"
Angelica Garnett, from "Deceived with Kindness"
Emma Mashinini, from "Strikes Have Followed Me All My Life"
Meena Alexander, from "Fault Lines"
Edith Mirante, from "Burmese Looking Glass"
Mary Benson, from "A Far Cry"
Ruth First, from "117 Days"