Female Authors under the Mask of a Male Pseudonym - Some Approaches to Revealing Authors’ Gender


  • Roberta Matkovic
  • Tanja Habrle




pseudonym, female writers, analysis, an author’s gender, literature


A patriarchal society has very clear and rigid norms. Its frame does not allow one to move out of it, and a mode of behaviour which attempts any change is severely punished. This kind of society has strict written and unwritten rules, and it seems that the second kind are more harmful and painful for the individual than the first. In 19th century, European society was strongly patriarchal, and a phenomenon which confirms this is the fact that many female writers published their works under a male pseudonym. A patriarchal system attempts to prevent women from any artistic and scientific form and expression, as they are labelled as less intellectually able or talented, but by choosing a male pseudonym they found a way to reach their goal. An author writes about what he knows, what surrounds him and/or what he notices, feels and thinks. Considering that a patriarchal society system is highly defined, female and male points of view, their angles of reflection and aims are obviously different. In novels, choice of character and situation and the description of such, can easily reveal an author’s gender. These approaches will be illustrated by analysing the work of Vincenza Speraz, who lived in North Italy between the 19th and 20th centuries, and published her works under the pseudonym Bruno Sperani.




How to Cite

Matkovic, R., & Tanja Habrle. (2015). Female Authors under the Mask of a Male Pseudonym - Some Approaches to Revealing Authors’ Gender. European Journal of Language and Literature, 1(3), 68–75. https://doi.org/10.26417/ejls.v3i1.p69-76