Novelist and Philanthropist
Isabel Allende is one of the most widely read authors in the world. She has written 24 books, translated into more than 42 languages, sold more than 75 million copies, being honored with 15 international honorary doctorates with more than 60 awards from 15 countries. She was inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and in 2010, she received Chile’s National Literature Prize. President Barack Obama awarded her the 2014 Presidential Medal of Freedom.
Her most recent book, The Soul of a Woman, explores what feeds the soul of feminists—and all women—today. As a young woman coming of age in the late 1960s, she rode the second wave of feminism. Among a tribe of like-minded female journalists, Allende for the first time felt comfortable in her own skin, as they wrote “with a knife between our teeth” about women’s issues. She has seen what the movement has accomplished in the course of her lifetime. And over the course of three passionate marriages, she has learned how to grow as a woman while having a partner, when to step away, and the rewards of embracing one’s sexuality. Allende hopes her book will “light the torches of our daughters and granddaughters with mine. They will have to live for us, as we lived for our mothers, and carry on with the work still left to be finished.”