Literary Coteries and the Irish Women Writers' Club (1933-1958)

BookLiterary Coteries and the Irish Women Writers' Club (1933-1958)

Literary Coteries and the Irish Women Writers' Club (1933-1958)

Liverpool English Texts and Studies, 87


July 8th, 2021



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As publishers in private printing presses, as writers of dissident texts and as political campaigners against censorship and for intellectual freedom, a radical group of twentieth-century Irish women formed a female-only coterie to foster women’s writing and maintain a public space for professional writers. This book documents the activities of the Women Writers’ Club (1933–1958), exploring its ethos, social and political struggles, and the body of works created and celebrated by its members. Examining the period through a history of the book approach, it covers social events, reading committees, literary prizes, publishing histories, modernist printing presses, book fairs, reading practices, and the various political philosophies shared by members of the Club. It reveals how professional women writers deployed their networks and influence to carve out a space for their writing in the cultural marketplace, collaborating with other artistic groups to fight for creative freedoms and the right to earn a living by the pen. The book paints a vivid portrait of the Women Writers’ Club, showcasing their achievements and challenging existing orthodoxy on the role of women in Irish literary life.

Author Information

Deirdre Brady teaches at the University of Limerick, having completed her PhD on mid-twentieth-century Irish women writers in 2014.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents
Section TitlePagePrice
List of Figures9
1. Intellectual Fraternities? Dublin United Arts Club, the Irish Academy of Letters and the Irish PEN27
2. Coterie Culture and the Women Writers’ Club, 1933–195865
3. “A Wild Field to a Later Generation”: The Book of the Year Award97
4. Women Writers in Irish Print Culture, 1930–1960147
5. Coterie Culture and Modernist Presses: The Gayfield Press169