‘A Room of One’s Own’
Barnes & Noble
This extended essay by modernist English writer Virginia Woolf is based on several lectures she gave to two women’s colleges at Cambridge University in 1928. In it, Woolf describes that it’s circumstance, not talent alone, that allows men to be more successful at writing. Women, in other words, spend so much time cooking, cleaning, and tending to their children that they have no time left for art. To write well, therefore, a woman must have—you guessed it—a “room of her own.” While on its surface, this essay appears to be solely about writing, it actually makes quite a statement about wealth and class, freedom and confinement, and the power struggle between genders. Here are some more good books every woman should read in her lifetime.
Reading time: 2 hours, 38 minutes
‘The Art of War’
Barnes & Noble
Written by Chinese warrior Sun Tzu in the 5th century BC, The Art of War is widely considered to be one of the best books—if not the best book—about military combat strategy in human history. Comprised of 13 chapters, each detailing a separate facet of warfare, the book has been translated into every major language and has thousands of editions in circulation. For centuries, it has been cited and praised by world leaders both for its detailed study of military strategy and its philosophical examination of strong, effective leadership. If you’re traveling, bring along one of these short books you can finish on your next flight.
Reading time: 1 hour, 24 minutes