is a novella by Dorothy Bussy (


Strachey, 1865-1960) first published in 1949 by the Hogarth Press. Bussy’s novella appeared pseudonymously, announcing itself as a memoir of the eponymous “Olivia” herself, and has until recently been reprinted under that pseudonym. Focussing on desire between women,


recalls an intensely formative year in the life of its sixteen-year-old protagonist as she moves from England to France to finish her education at Les Avons school in the late nineteenth century. The novella has been widely translated, and has become a classic of modern lesbian fiction. Kathryn Holland suggests that


has garnered an “idiosyncratic reputation, with praise and strong interest before and after its publication followed by little scholarly…

2115 words

Citation: Yiannitsaros, Christopher. "Olivia". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 05 August 2020 [https://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=39168, accessed 03 March 2024.]

39168 Olivia 3 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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