Women's Literature, in general, literature written by women; the concept of feminist literature and literary criticism entered the German language at the beginning of the 1970s. The issue of the role of women in a society dominated by men and the relationship between the sexes are the main focus of women's literature. Under the influence of American and French writers (B. Friedan, K. Millett, S. de Beauvoir) issues concerning emancipation in culture and society, or a female counter-culture ("women's æsthetics") were addressed, and autobiographical writings of women play a key role. Until the beginning of the 20th century only a few women in Austria stood out as writers: in the Middle Ages Frau Ava, in the Baroque era C. R. v. Greiffenberg, in the early 19th century K. Pichler and F. v. Arnstein, who led a literary salon in Vienna; the first high points in women's literature are represented by the works of A. Christen and M. v. Ebner-Eschenbach. M. Kautsky, the "Rote Marlitt" made a case in her novels for a new self-awareness for women; V. Baum and G. Kaus, and others, wrote bestsellers in popular literature; S. Kubelka is a contemporary bestseller author. In the 20th century I. Bachmann achieved international fame as poet and narrative writer. Other women authors in the 20th century are I. Aichinger, C. Busta, J. Ebner, B. Frischmuth, G. Fussenegger, P. Grogger, E. Gerstl, E. v. Handel-Mazzetti, M. Haushofer, E. Jelinek, M.-T. Kerschbaumer, C. Lavant, F. Mayroecker, C. Noestlinger, E. Reichart, B. Schwaiger, H. Spiel and D. Zeemann.
Literature#H. Blinn (ed.), Emanzipation und Literatur, 1984; C. Guertler (ed.), Schreiben Frauen anders?, 1984; H. Gnueg and R. Moehrmann (eds.), Frauen Literatur Geschichte, 1985; G. Brinker-Gabler (ed.), Deutsche Literatur von Frauen, 2 vols., 1988; T. Moi, Sexus Text Herrschaft. Feministische Literaturtheorie, 1989.