Laura Marcus

A Call for Women Poets to Become Sensible

Slip-Shod Sibyls

By

Viking 416pp £20 order from our bookshop

In 1979, Germaine Greer published The Obstacle Race, a compendious study of women painters and of their confrontation by ‘obstacles both external and surmountable, internal and insurmountable of the race for achievement’. In Slip-Shod Sibyls, she turns her attentions to women poets, including some on whose scholarly editions she has previously worked. Beginning with Sappho, Greer moves on to an exploration of English women poets, with chapters on Katherine Philips, ‘the matchless Orinda’, the Restoration poet and dramatist Aphra Behn, Anne Wharton, niece of the Earl of Rochester, Anne Finch, Countess of Winchilsea, and, from the nineteenth century, L E L (Laetitia Landon) and Christina Rossetti.

Sign Up to our newsletter

Receive free articles, highlights from the archive, news, details of prizes, and much more.

Follow Literary Review on Twitter

  • Last Tweets

    • 'Since Dylan’s commercial and ideological heyday, the intrusion of sociology, semiology and post-structuralist thou… ,
    • 'One of the reasons for its longevity is that it has virtually nothing to say about science and technology at all,… ,
    • 'The characters in many of these stories are trapped in the obsessive present tense of their own thoughts; in the m… ,
    • 'Libraries, for much of their existence, have embodied in microcosm many of the characteristics of the totalitarian… ,
    • 'Moss and Cynthia buy several properties through which to launder their ill-gotten gains, take lots of drugs, have… ,
    • 'Never mind the imperial cult. This is the cult of Boris. What happened to Rome?' From the LR archive:… ,
    • Thirty-two years ago this month, we published Muriel Spark's short story, 'A Playhouse Called Remarkable' Read it… ,