The Odd Women, written by renowned English novelist George Gissing in 1893, is a literary work exploring the complex themes of marriage, women’s roles in society, and the early feminist movement. The Odd Women has been translated into Farsi by Ali Salami.
The novel takes its name from the supposed excess of one million women over men in Victorian England, leading to the “odd” women who remained unmarried. These women, struggling with societal pressures, lead unique and often unconventional lives, making them strange or “odd” in the eyes of society.
Gissing was an accomplished writer who published 23 novels between 1880 and 1903, including well-known works like The Nether World (1889) and New Grub Street (1891). The latter brought him a substantial sum of £250. He also befriended George Meredith, a fellow writer who greatly influenced Gissing’s work.
Despite his financial success, Gissing’s health suffered in the 1890s, limiting the time he spent in London. Nevertheless, he continued to produce novels, including Born in Exile (1892), In the Year of Jubilee (1894), and The Whirlpool (1897). The changing tastes of the reading public prompted Gissing to experiment with different forms of writing, including short stories and novellas.
In 1897, Gissing met the famed writer H. G. Wells and his wife, who spent time with Gissing and his sister in Budleigh Salterton. Wells observed that Gissing, once a vibrant and indefatigable young writer, had become a damaged and ailing man who was overly cautious about his health, interpreting every malaise as a serious illness. Despite these challenges, Gissing left behind an impressive body of work, including The Odd Women, which remains a timeless exploration of important social issues.