First published in 1906, this semi-autobiographical novel is a key text for understanding Italian women’s writing of the twentieth century and offers a tremendous insight into fin de siÃcle Italian life and its complex web of social issues. Aleramo’s astonishing account takes the reader across a tormented journey of self-affirmation – from the narrator’s loss of innocence, grief and isolation, enlightenment, then independence – offering a strikingly clear self-analysis and a vibrant depiction of the early feminist movement in Italy.
‘The first Italian feminist writer’ La Repubblica
‘To love, to sacrifice oneself, and to submit! Was this what all women were destined for?’
When her carefree, aspirational childhood in a seaside town is brought brutally to an end, the nameless narrator of Sibilla Aleramo’s blazing autobiographical novel discovers the shocking reality of life for a woman in Italy at the dawn of the twentieth century. As she begins to recognize the similarities between her own predicament and the plight of her mother and the women around her, she becomes convinced that she must escape her fate. Unashamed and remarkably ahead of its time, A Woman is a landmark in European feminist writing.
‘Powerful’ Luigi Pirandello