FeMale PenName

How many of you can name a well-known author or, indeed, a musician, who is a woman but used a man’s moniker as her pseudonym? I’m NOT playing the “woman’s card” here in this heightened political season in the USA, but do care deeply that in the 19th and 20th century literary and cultural scene in Europe and elsewhere it was a “man’s world” that preferred to ignore the aspirations of its female counterpart, particularly when it came to the writing of books and music. The result was that some creative women hid behind a “man’s name” in the hope of attaining fame and fortune without scorn and turpitude being heaped upon them – and a few notables did just that as borne out by this blog post born unplanned yesterday under my fingers and published today for your comments and feedback.

I knew three off the cuff, because of their novels that I’d read over the years, but after delving into the matter further I came across  another two.

Let me kick off this post by listing all of them in chronological order starting with George Sand (see image below of 1864). George_Sand_by_Nadar,_1864I only became aware of her very existence due to my abiding love of and interest in the music of Frederic Chopin, his life and his times.

Over the years I have performed many of his compositions for piano around the world and viewed the world-famous films based on his life that depict in varying degrees of authenticity the inspiring but gut-wrenching part played by the ‘mannish’ Madame Sand in his short existence on this earth.

220px-Indiana,_George_Sand_(Calmann-Lévy)Penname – George Sand
Female Author – Amandine Lucie Aurore Dupin
Novel – Indiana (1832)
Country of Origin – FRANCE

Wuthering_Heights,_1847Penname – Ellis Bell
Female Author – Emily Bronte
Novel – Wuthering Heights (1847)
Country of Origin – ENGLAND


Silas_Marner_1Penname – George Eliot
Female Author – Mary Ann Evans
Novel – Silas Marner (1861)
Country of Origin – ENGLAND


outofafricaPenname – Isak Dinesen
Female Author – Karen Blixen
Novel – Out of Africa (1937)
Country of Origin – DENMARK


Cuckoo's CallingPenname – Robert Galbraith
Female Author – J. K. Rowling
Novel – The Cuckoo’s Calling (2013)
Country of Origin – SCOTLAND

Here’s where I call on all those interested in sharing their own favorites among pseudonymic ‘adventuresses’ devoted to the arts, by scrolling down to the ‘comments’ section of this blog – thanks!




Copyright © 2016 Azim Lewis Mayadas




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