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  • Category: Books

    Did male writers ever assume androgynous names like women writers in the history?

    Having a query about pen names used by male and female writers? Looking out for answers here? Check out this page for responses to your query from experts.

    Women writers in history like Charlotte Bronte (Currer Bell), Emily Bronte (Ellis Bell), and, Mary Ann Evans (George Eliot) had taken either male or androgynous pen names. For female writers to do so, the reasons are obvious: to hide their identity so as to be read like a male writer would be read, without any prejudices. Also, writing was not considered an appropriate profession for women.
    The question is: has any male writer ever assumed or faced the need to assume an androgynous name or a female given name? Anonymity has been chosen by many though.
  • Answers

    6 Answers found.
  • I know some male writers who used androgynous names as their pen names. in Telugu literature, there is a writer by the pen name " SAMARAM". The meaning of the name is War. By knowing the name no one can identify the gender of this writer. Similarly, there is another person by name "KARUNA SREE" Generally this name is being used by females but this male writer by name Jandhyala Papayya Sastry used this. Similarly, another famous name in Telugu is USHASREE. This is also a female name. But used by a famous writer by name Puranapanda. Like this, we may find many names like this in other languages also we may find.
    The reason behind keeping these names are not known but there may not be any specific reason for these names. It is a Fashion for those people I think.

    always confident

  • There are authors who have written their books with some other assumed name and of course, they had different reasons to do that and it was not exactly the same reason as that of female authors as mentioned in the thread initiating forum post above.

    For example, Stephen King had written some books with the pseudonym Richard Bachman. At that time there was a restriction on the authors for saturating their works in the market.

    Another interesting case is of Richard Matheson who after seeing a lot of modifications in his book adopted for a movie chose a pseudonym for its credit as Logan Swanson.

    The famous science fiction author Issac Asimov changed his name to Paul French when he started writing for a TV serial. Later he revealed that it was him.

    Knowledge is power.

  • I don't think there are authors who would resort to that. Women were treated very bad in medieval and early 19th centuries.
    And thats when our classical novels came from.
    But I know this author called Sidney Sheldon.
    I thought he was a 'she'.

    Writer Martyn Waites assumed a pen name "Tanya Carver" to show that women too can be good thriller writers.

    The stronger a light shines the darker are the shadows around it.

  • In Tamil literature, Sujatha is a familiar name. It was the Pseudonym of Rangarajan. He is an Engineer by profession, worked at Bharath Electronics. He supervised the Electronic Voting Machine's design and production, which we are currently using in Indian elections.

    Sujatha is his wife's name. He started to write with a pen name, because, there was already another Rangarajan in the Vikatan publications. But the choice of the name Sujatha may be, because of his love for his wife. He has written more than 100 novels, 250 short stories, screen plays to movies and also penned dialogues to few of Manirthnam and Shankar's movies. Roja is one among them. Since he is an Engineer and interested in science and computers, his science fiction novels and stories are remarkable. He is a versatile writer.

    Apart from Sujatha, I remembe Sarath Chandra Chatterjee, a Bengali writer. His pen name is also a female name Anila Devi. He lived in 1850's and his writings were mainly about the life style of village people and the tragedies they face on everyday life, especially because of the social practices prevailed in Bengal at that time.

    I believe, writers choose the pen name based on their literature work. Choosing a female name by a male writer might be for giving the output of their work in female version. When they concentrate much to bring out the life practices of some people, (we all aware of the sufferings that females undergone during that period), looking them from female version is important. It adds more impact to the content. Also, few other male writers, who fought for women liberty also wrote in the name of female given names. It is denote, "for the women, by the women".

    So, male choosing female pen name and female choosing male pen name is closely related to the content they work on. There are some exceptional, they write in the name of their loved one.

    Sri Vetri
    Spread Positivism

  • A very interesting question. It was a common phenomenon of earlier days when female writers took male pen-names and wrote novels. This was done to gain acceptance in the male-dominated literary world. However, there are a few examples when we can see opposite trend.

    Famous Bengali novelist, Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay, wrote some of his novels (depicting the hardship of females of Bengal), adopting the pen-name of Anila Devi. Needless to state that this was done to get acceptance as a writer from the female readers of Bengal. Later, when Sarat Chandra became very popular, he didn't feel the urge of writing using the pen-name.

    "If you are killed in action, you go to Heaven. If you win, you rule this Earth (as beautiful as Heaven). That is why, O son of Kunti, take a firm resolve and fight!"-- Shrimad Bhagwad Gita

  • A famous name in modern Malayalam literature(mainly novels) is 'Vilasini". Vilasini is a general female name. However it was a male writer-M.K.Menon- who used the pen name 'Vilasini' and became famous in that name. Very few people only knew the real name.

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