Mary E. Bradley Lane

Biographical note

Mary E. Bradley Lane is the author of the Utopian novel Mizora, first published in 1880–81, when it was serialized in the Cincinnati Commercial newspaper. It appeared in book form in 1890. Mizora is “the first portrait of an all-female, self-sufficient society,” and “the first feminist technological Utopia.”

The book depicts an all-female “utopia” existing within the Earth. The Mizorans practice eugenics; all of them are blonde “Aryans,” who disdain people of darker skin. The novel also refers to political repression in contemporary Russia. The narrator, Vera Zarovitch, is a young wife and mother, but she has fallen foul of the Czarist regime and has been sentenced to exile in Siberia. She escapes northward into the Arctic, where her kayak is swept over a vast waterfall to Mizora. She spends fifteen years there, learning the ways of the culture; at the end of that time she longs to return to her husband and child, and teach her own society what she has learned.

Very little is known about the author, Mary Lane.

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