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Elin Wägner

Translated by Sarah Death

ISBN-13: 9781870041744

224 pages     RRP £9.95    paperback    2009    Series B No. 45

Penwoman is the classic novel about the Swedish women's suffrage movement. Originally published in 1910, this was Elin Wägner's second novel. Having begun her career as a journalist, she went on to become one of Sweden's leading writers, her prolific output developing radical feminist and feminist-pacifist tendencies.

The novel, whose central character is a young female journalist, offers exceptional insights into the dedicated work and strong sense of sisterhood uniting a group of women campaigning for suffrage. But it also explores a range of other issues affecting the situation of women in Sweden at the time, from the role of paid work to matters of morality, eroticism and love. The refreshingly disrespectful and witty style has helped make the novel one of Wägner's most enduringly popular. It was quickly translated into Danish, Russian and German, but this is the first time it has been published in English.

The translator, Sarah Death, is one of the foremost translators of Swedish literature, and has won the prestigious George Bernard Shaw Translation Prize on two successive occasions, in 2003 and 2006.

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