She has collected the statistics on how relatively few women are shortlisted for major literary awards. I suggest you click though, but if not, here's the nub of it:
This year’s Dolman travel writing book prize has longlisted 8 men and 2 women. The previous year the shortlist was 6 men and 1 woman. The Walter Scott prize for historical fiction has shortlisted 5 men and 1 woman this year. There were double that number of women on the shortlist last year: 2. One of them, Hilary Mantel, won. The Independent Foreign Fiction Prize has returned a shortlist of 5 men and 1 woman every single year for the last five years. In 2006 it went totally mad and had 2 women and 4 men! Since 2001, the IMPAC prize has had 11 men winners and 0 women. The Samuel Johnson prize has a 2011 longlist of 15 books by men, 1 co-authored by a mixed pair and 2 books by women. In the previous 12 years it has had shortlists of 5 men and just 1 woman 7 times. In 2009 it was 6 men and no women. It has been 4 men and 2 women three times. In 2003 they had their year of insanity: 3 men, 3 women. The Ondaatje Prize has honoured 7 men and 1 woman.
I already knew this about ratios for reviewing (my post on the Vida count), but didn't about prizes. Of course, this could simply indicate that women are just not writing very good books; but it seems unlikely.
In this connection, the column also points out that as consumers, men tend very markedly not to buy books by women. This obviously has a big impact on sales figures for female authors, but I also wonder what this reluctance to engage with women's work means in terms of the gender make-up of reviewing and awarding bodies?
Honestly, given the choice, I would totally rather have been born a boy. I can't be bothered with all this.
I was led to this link by Annie Holmes, whose book you may be interested in, by the way, Zimbawean readers, being verbatim stories of life in Zim. I've heard only fabulous things.