Which are the best autobiographies by women?
That question has been floating around Twitter, here are my picks:
Sylvia Plath, The Bell Jar.
Janet Frame, Autobiography.
Claire Tomalin, A Life of My Own.
Marjane Satrapi, The Complete Persepolis.
Golda Meir, My Life.
Joan Didion, The Year of Magical Thinking.
Zora Neale Hurston, Dust Tracks on a Dirt Road.
Temple Grandin, Thinking in Pictures.
Am I allowed to say Virginia Woolf, corpus?
Nadezhda Mandelstam, Hope Against Hope: A Memoir.
Helen Keller, The Story of My Life.
Anne Frank of course.
What else? Maybe Carrie Fisher? Maya Angelou? Erica Jong? St. Therese of Liseaux? (I Am Rigoberto Menchu turned out to be a fraud.) There are a variety of important feminist books that read like quasi-autobiographies, but maybe they don’t quite fit the category. What is a memoir and what is an autobiography in this context? Do leave your suggestions in the comments.
It is also worth thinking about how these differ from well-known male autobiographies…