The UCL Laws Feminist Book Club brings together staff and students at all levels to talk about books in an informal setting.
The UCL Laws Feminist Book Club was set up in 2018 with the aim of creating a strong feminist network within the law school. We invite feminist faculty members, staff and students (LLB, LLM, and PhD) to join us for monthly meetings in which we chat informally about a work of female-authored fiction. We have structured the group as a book club because, well, we all like to read – and we believe that it’s important to supplement our work and studies with non-academic reading. It helps to keep us grounded, enriched, and energised. The book club is an inclusive, non-hierarchical, and non-judgmental space for all genders.
2023-24 meetings and book list
We meet in Bentham House, UCL Faculty of Laws. You are welcome to drop in on individual sessions, or to attend regularly – whatever works for you. Book your place now:
Wednesday, 27 September, 12pm-1pm | Love in Five Acts by Daniela Krien
Thursday 26 October, 1pm-2pm | Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie | Reserve your place: https://ucl-laws.ticketleap.com/fbc-americanah/
Thursday 30 November, 1pm-2pm | Once There Were Wolves by Charlotte McConaghy | Reserve your place: https://ucl-laws.ticketleap.com/fbc-wolves/
Tuesday 19 December, TBC | Informal Feminist Book Club session | More details to follow
Thursday 25 January 2024, 1pm-2pm | The Memory Police by Yoko Ogawa | Reserve your place: https://ucl-laws.ticketleap.com/fbc-memory/
Thursday 29 February, 1pm-2pm | The Cost of Living by Deborah Levy | Reserve your place: https://ucl-laws.ticketleap.com/fbc-living/
Thursday 21 March, 1pm-2pm | Members' Choice - TBC | More details to follow
Thursday 25 April, 1pm-2pm | Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi | Reserve your place: https://ucl-laws.ticketleap.com/fbc-homegoing/
Thursday 30 May, 1pm-2pm | Members' Choice - TBC | More details to follow
Frequently asked questions
- What does the book club do?
We get together once a month and talk about books! If there are many attendees, we split into small groups; otherwise we just engage in open-ended discussion as a group. Sometimes we use question prompts to get the ball rolling.
You are free to join the book group at any point in the year, and to attend as many or as few meetings as you wish. If you were planning to come but haven’t finished the book, come anyway! No one is testing you.
- Who can join?
All current and former members of the Faculty of Laws community are welcome – from LLB, LLM and PhD students and alumni, to teaching fellows, faculty and staff.Everyone who likes reading and talking about books is welcome - whatever your gender.
We don’t expect prior knowledge of feminist theory or literary criticism. What we have in common is an openness to and engagement with feminist ideas, and a love of reading.
- What do you read?
Our book list includes novels, short stories, and memoir. We profile books written by women from a range of countries and backgrounds and attempt to balance better-known authors with those who may have slipped under the radar.
In 2022-23, our theme was 'Books in Translation' and we read:
- Magda Szabo, The Door
- Mieko Kawakami, Breasts and Eggs
- Jhumpa Lahiri, Whereabouts
- The Years by Annie Ernaux
- Straight from the Horse's Mouth by Meryem Alaoui
- Visitation by Jenny Erpenbeck
- Frontier by Can Xue
In 2021-22, we read:
- Elena Ferrante - The Lying Life of Adults
- Andrea Levy - The Long Song
- Penelope Mortimer - The Pumpkin Eater
- Banana Yoshimoto - Kitchen
- Kate Chopin - The Awakening
- Isabel Allende - Eva Luna
- Sylvia Plath - The Bell Jar
- Jean Rhys - Wide Sargasso Sea
- Virginia Woolf - The Waves
In 2020-21, we read:
- Burnt Sugar - Avni Dosh
- Grand Union: Stories - Zadie Smith
- The Shadow King - Maaza Mengiste
- Her Body and Other Parties - Carmen Maria Machado
- Weather - Jenny Offill
- Such a Fun Age - Kiley Reid
- Negative Capability - Michèle Roberts
- The Round House - Louise Erdrich
In 2019-20, we read:
- My Life on the Road - Gloria Steinem
- Song of Solomon - Toni Morrison
- Normal People - Sally Rooney
- The Testaments - Margaret Atwood
- Sour Heart - Jenny Zhang
- Girl, Woman, Other - Bernardine Evaristo
- The Mother of All Questions - Rebecca Solnit
- Invisible Women: Exposing Gender Bias in a World Designed for Men - Caroline Criado Perez
- Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People About Race - Reni Eddo-Lodge
- Last Witnesses: Unchildlike Stories - Svetlana Alexievich
In our first year (2018-19) we read:
- Disoriental - Négar Djavadi
- The Power - Naomi Alderman
- Vera - Elizabeth von Arnim
- Sing, Unburied, Sing - Jesmyn Ward
- Milkman - Anna Burns
- Stay with Me - Ayobami Adebayo
- Woman at Point Zero - Nawal el Saadawi
- Red Clocks – Leni Zumas
This year’s selection can be viewed in the above section.