What is Chick Lit?

 

Chick Lit emerged as a genre of popular fiction (mainly) for, by and about women with the adventures of Britain’s best known singleton, Bridget Jones, in 1996. Other novels that are considered foundational texts are Marian Keyes’ Watermelon (1995) or, for North America, Candace Bushnell’s Sex and the City (1997) and Terry MCmillan's Waiting to Exhale (1992) and How Stella Got Her Groove Back (1996). The genre has not only proven to be extremely successful (both in sales figures and popularity), but also extremely flexible, as can be seen from its many variations and subgenres, such as ethnic Chick Lit, Teen Lit or Mummy Lit, to name only a few. Shelves in bookstores around the world are stacked with pastel-coloured books, whose covers usually give away the genre, if not by the colour alone, by the typical feminine–connoted motifs such as high heels, martini glasses, flowery patterns, cocktail dresses, gift boxes or shopping bags. The texts merit academic attention not only because of their transnational and transmedial appeal, but also because of their political implications as products of postfeminist pop culture.

 

About this project

 

The Chick Lit Project website was set up to provide a forum for those with an interest in (post)feminist literature and culture. If you want to contribute to this website or share comments, suggestions and opinions, feel free to contact me: h.missler(at)mx.uni-saarland.de
My PhD dissertation analyses chick lit as a literary and socio-cultural phenomenon in British and U.S. American popular culture of the Nineties and Noughties. It was published with Routledge and is available here