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International Literary Women & Organizations that Balance for Better

By Words Without Borders

For International Women’s Day, we’re celebrating women and organizations from around the globe who advocate for greater gender parity in the literary world. Through publishing and activism, they have been doing the work to tip the scales and #BalanceforBetter.


Women in Translation Month/Meytal Radzinski

In August 2014, Meytal Radzinski founded Women in Translation Month on her blog, Biblibio, inspiring a movement to increase dialogue and discussion about women writers in translation and to encourage people to read more books by women in translation during #WITMonth and beyond.
Follow @Read_WIT


The Afghan Women’s Writing Project

Founded in 2009 by writer and journalist Masha Hamilton with the goal of empowering Afghan women to tell their own stories and truths, the Afghan Women’s Writing Project publishes writing by and offers salons, writing workshops, and mentorship for women in Afghanistan.
Follow @AWWProject


Tilted Axis Press’s Translating Feminism Series

Tilted Axis Press created their forthcoming Translating Feminisms chapbook series, featuring poetry and essays by women writers and translators from across Asia, with the goal of working against fetishization and promoting intersectional, international feminism in literature.
Follow @TiltedAxisPress


Well-Read Black Girl/Glory Edim

Launched in 2015 as an Instagram account to promote black women writers and connect them with readers, Glory Edim’s Well-Read Black Girl has grown into a multi-platform reading network that includes book-club meetings, an online community, and an annual literary festival. Most recently, Edim published an anthology, Well-Read Black Girl: Finding Our Stories, Discovering Ourselves.
Follow @wellreadblackgirl



Founded two decades ago by Rachel Levitsky, this feminist avant-garde collective promotes the work of women and feminist writers through a reading and salon series and the publication of books and chaplets, including translated works.
Follow @bella_collab



Founded in 1991, the UK-based Kali develops and presents contemporary theater by female writers of South Asian descent, and also provides opportunities for directors and actors of South Asian descent.
Follow @KaliTheatreUK


Women in Translation tumblr/Margaret Carson and Alta L. Price

Founded by Margaret Carson and Alta L. Price, the Women in Translation tumblr raises awareness of the lack of gender parity in translation and shines a spotlight on women’s voices through publishing data as well as Q&As, announcements, letters, and more.
Read an interview with Margaret Carson and Alta L. Price


FEMRITE – Uganda Women Writers Association

Founded in 1996 with the goal of publishing, training, and promoting creative literature by women in Uganda, FEMRITE also runs a readers and writers club for women.
Follow @ugwomenwriters


And Other Stories/Year of Publishing Women

Inspired by writer Kamila Shamsie’s call to action, publisher And Other Stories committed to publishing solely work by women writers, many of them in translation, in 2018.
Follow @andothertweets


Second Shelf Books/A. N. Devers

In 2018, writer, journalist, and rare book dealer A. N. Devers created the Second Shelf bookshop and literary quarterly to champion women’s writing and ensure that new books, rare books, and rediscovered works by women remain on the shelves and available to readers.
Follow @secondshelfbks


VIDA: Women in Literary Arts

This nonprofit feminist organization has, for almost a decade, created transparency around the lack of parity in U.S. publishing through its annual VIDA Count—which breaks down by gender book reviewers, books reviewed, and journalistic bylines—and through events and the publication of interviews and essays in the VIDA Review.
Follow @VIDA_lit


House of the Unsilenced

With a specific focus on women’s stories, the Jakarta-based House of the Unsilenced brings together artists, writers, and sexual assault survivors to create new works about survivors’ lives and what it means to speak up.
Follow @Unsilenced__


The Feminist Press

Founded in 1970, the educational nonprofit organization the Feminist Press publishes classic and new writing from around the world, with a focus on books that explore contemporary feminist issues of equality and gender identity.
Follow @FeministPress


Girls Write Now

The New York-based Girls Write Now helps underserved young women to find their voices through the power of writing and community by pairing them with professional women writers.
Follow @girlswritenow


The Translating Women Project and Conference

Created by Helen Vassallo, the UK-based Translating Women Project studies female-authored texts from around the world translated into English with the aim of promoting awareness of and interest in women’s voices. In 2019, Vassallo and Olga Castro (coeditor of Feminist Translation Studies) will host the Translating Women Conference.
Follow @translatewomen 

Published Mar 8, 2019   Copyright 2019 Words Without Borders

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