For Quick Alerts
For Daily Alerts

World Book Day Special: 20 Indian Women Writers

By Super

Women's Day 2014 is in just two days from now. And what better way to celebrate this special day for women than knowing about women who have made their mark in history. Boldsky brings you a series of Indian women writers who have changed the perspective of the world towards Indian literature. The list is of India women writers in English. But there are a vast number of Indian female authors in regional languages still lying unexplored.



Being a woman writer is not easy. There was a time when a woman's work could not get published without hiding her true identity. Even today, J K Rowling, the famous creator of Harry Potter series, was advised against using her full name lest it reveals her gender. Indian women writers too have not had an easy existence either. That is why they make the perfect subjects to discuss on Women's Day 2014.

This list of Indian female authors might surprise some. It covers both famous and new writers. There might be some names you are way too familiar with and some names that you have never heard of. But on Women's Day 2014, let try and give an equal ear to all the female voices in this country that are begging to be heard.


Arundhati Roy

Non-fiction was forte that Indian women writers were yet to explore until Arundhuti Roy's ‘The God Of Small Things' came by. Not only did the book win the Man Booker Prize in 1998, it also put India on the world map of non-fiction works.


Shobha De

Shobha De deals with the glitz and glamour quotient of the urban Indian women. Shobha De's novels tell the world that rapes and bride burning aside, there is an accomplished side to the Indian women.


Anjum Hasan

Anjum Hasan is Indian female author who hails from the North East. She brings a unique flavour of the North Easter states in her writing. Her debut novel, ‘The Lunatic In My Head' created quite a stir. She has very psychological stream of consciousness kind of writing.


Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni

Mysticism and magical realism is Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni's style. Her novel, ‘The Palace Of Illusions' is a re-telling of Mahabharata from the point of view of Draupadi.


Mridula Koshy

Mridula Koshy is a new Indian woman on the horizon. Her collection of short stories, ‘If It Is Sweet' won the Shakti Bhatt First Book Prize in 2007. She has followed it up with a novel ‘Not Only The Things That Have Happened' this year.


Farzana Doctor

Farzana Doctor is an Indian-Canadian writer who has made some in-roads into upcoming LGBT literature. She has written two novels so far and received the Dayne Ogilvie Grant for her writing.


Kanchana Krishnan Ayyar

Kanchana Krishnan Ayyar's first novel ‘When The Lotus Blooms' was received with positive criticism and a Crossword recommendation. She gives you flavour of hardcore brahminical Tamil society.


Rukmini Bhaya Nair

Apart from being an award winning poet and writer, Rukmini Bhaya Nair is also an accomplished linguist. Her collection of poems named, ‘The Yellow Hibiscus' has received much praise.


Kiran Desai

Kiran Desai is a famous Indian author who is settled in the USA now. She is the daughter of Anita Desai, a great writer in her own right. Kiran Desai's most famous novel is ‘The Inheritance Of Loss' which won the Man Booker Prize in 2006.


Jhumpa Lahiri

Jhumpa Lahiri made history with her first novel ‘The Namesake'. Her collection of short stories namely, ‘The Interpreter Of Maladies' was a bestseller and also received the Pulitzer Prize for 2000. She writes about non-resident Indians, in particular about the Bengali people settled abroad.


Rani Dharkar

Rani Dharkar received many accolades for first novel, ‘The Virgin Syndrome' and also had reasonable commercial success. It is believed that she can communicate Indian traditions to the West in their own language.


Manju Kapur

Manju Kapoor's first novel, ‘Difficult Daughters won the Commonwealth Writers Prize. Manju Kapur's special forte is to depict the married Indian woman who is a wife, mother and daughter-in-law. Her other novels include ‘A Married Woman' and ‘Custody'.


Meena Alexander

Meena Alexander is a renowned Indian poet and author. She is best known for her novel, ‘The Nampally Road' that vividly describes the gang rape of a women by Police officials and the events that ensue. Meena Alexander brings to life scenes of great violence, tenderness and ingenuity from Indian life.


Anita Desai

Anita Mazumdar Desai is an Indian author of much repute. She has received several nominations for the literary awards and won the Sahitya Academy Award for her novel, 'Fire On The Mountain' in 1978. Anita Desai's daughter, Kiran Desai is also a writer.


Githa Hariharan

Githa Hariharan is best known for winning the right to give her surname to her kids in the Indian Court Of Law. Her first novel ‘Thousand Faces Of The Night' won the Commonwealth Writers Prize in 1993.


Bharati Mukherjee

Bharati Mukherjee is an American writer of Indian origin best known for her novel, ‘Jasmine'. She insists on being more American than Indian in her style of writing.


Kamala Das

Whimsical Kamala Das was known for her firebrand portrayal of sexuality that was unacceptable in Indian society. The once fiery feminist writer and poet is today a woman who believes in wearing the Hijaab.


Anita Nair

Anita Nair is a contemporary Indian writer who has experimented with many different subjects. But she is best known for drawing realist pictures of urban India. Her novels ‘The Better Man' and ‘Ladies Couple' are bestsellers.


Susan Visvanathan

Susan Visvanathan is better known as a sociologist than a writer of fiction though she is a genius in both. She is considered an authority in the knowledge of the Christian community in Kerala.


Namita Gokhale

Namita Gokhale is both a publisher and writer. Her writing is characterised by themes of loss and illness that often build up the story. She is best known for her books, ‘Shakuntala', ‘A Himalayan Love Story' and ‘A Book Of Shadows'.

Read more about: womens day literature
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. This includes cookies from third party social media websites and ad networks. Such third party cookies may track your use on Boldsky sites for better rendering. Our partners use cookies to ensure we show you advertising that is relevant to you. If you continue without changing your settings, we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies on Boldsky website. However, you can change your cookie settings at any time. Learn more