Zoe Williams

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For the participant in Gladiators of the same name, see Zoe Williams (Gladiators).
Zoe Williams
Born United Kingdom
Residence Camberwell
Alma mater Oxford University
Employer The Guardian
Children 2

Zoe Williams (born 1973) is an English columnist, journalist, and author.

Early life

Williams attended the independent Godolphin and Latymer School girls' school and read Modern History at Lincoln College, Oxford.[1] Her parents separated in 1976 and formally divorced 20 years later.[2]


Williams writes political commentary, interviews and reviews for The Guardian and the New Statesman. Her work has also appeared in other publications, including The Spectator, NOW Magazine,[3] the London Cycling Campaign's magazine London Cyclist and the London Evening Standard where she contributed columns on a variety of subjects, and a diary about being a single woman in London. She has also written restaurant reviews for The Sunday Telegraph.

Williams has also appeared as a guest on television. Clive James praised her appearance in documentary Teenage Kicks: the Search for Sophistication: "The brilliant journalist Zoe Williams did a short piece to camera that was almost an aria".[4] She has presented a radio documentary Inside the Academy School Revolution, which Miranda Sawyer found one-sided and "tame",[5] and hosted BBC Radio 4's What The Papers Say.

In May 2011 Williams admitted to fare dodging when in her 30s while travelling on London buses. She wrote "I actually had a lot of affection for bendy buses, mainly because evading your fare was so easy that to pay was almost missing the point. We used to call it freebussing."[6][7][8]

Williams describes her political views as left-wing and feminist.[citation needed] In 2014 she defended the social policy legacy of former Labour prime minister Tony Blair.[9] She sometimes covers feminist issues in her columns, and is a supporter of the British Humanist Association.[10]

She was longlisted for the Orwell Prize in 2012.[11][12] She was named Columnist of the Year 2010 at the WorkWorld Media Awards.[13]

She is the author of Bring It On, Baby: How to have a dudelike pregnancy (2010), a book of advice for mothers-to-be, which was republished in 2012 as What Not to Expect When You're Expecting.

Personal life

Williams lives in Camberwell, South London, with her husband.[14] Williams married the father of her son and daughter[15] in 2013 after ten years together and wrote about the wedding from a feminist perspective in her column for The Guardian.[16][17]


  1. Marrin, Minette (17 May 2009). "When today's left speaks it is right-wing bigotry we hear". The Sunday Times. Archived from the original on 17 May 2009. 
  2. Williams, Zoe. "Talking heads". Marie Claire. Retrieved 10 December 2012. 
  3. "Now price cut and celeb boost follows rival launch". Press Gazette. 9 October 2002. 
  4. James, Clive (7 October 2011). "Clive James on... Grand Designs and Dragons' Den". The Telegraph (UK). London. Retrieved 10 December 2012. 
  5. Sawyer, Miranda (9 December 2012). "Rewind radio: The Kitchen Cabinet; The Budget; Inside the Academy School Revolution; Breakfast; The Atkinson People – review". The Observer (London). Retrieved 10 December 2012. 
  6. Maguire, Kevin, "Champagne or sham pain", New Statesman, 27 October 2011
  7. Fawkes, Guido (27 October 2011). "Guardian Hack: "I’m a Dodger"". Order Order. 
  8. Zoe Williams "Boris Johnson and the Routemaster: soft edges and cheerful demeanour", The Guardian, 27 May 2011
  9. Zoe Williams (8 April 2014). "Stop calling Tony Blair a war criminal. The left should be proud of his record". The Guardian. Retrieved 12 April 2014. 
  10. "Zoe Williams". British Humanist Association website. Retrieved 10 December 2012. 
  11. "Zoe Williams". Orwell Prize website. Retrieved 10 December 2012. 
  12. "Orwell prize: four Guardian journalists nominated". The Guardian (UK). London. 31 March 2012. 
  13. "David Cohen named reporter of the year at WorkWorld Media Awards". Press Gazette. 19 January 2011. Retrieved 10 December 2012. 
  14. "Zoe Williams: My neighbour, the Leopard Man of Peckham | Columnists". London: guardian.co.uk. Retrieved 10 December 2012. 
  15. "Live chat on parenting with Zoe Williams | Life and style". London: guardian.co.uk. 8 June 2010. Retrieved 10 December 2012. 
  16. Zoe Williams (24 August 2013). "Why I married late: a feminist's guide". The Guardian. Retrieved 17 October 2013. 
  17. Zoe Williams (11 April 2008). "Zoe Williams: My boyfriend is right | Life and style". London: The Guardian. Retrieved 10 December 2012. 

External links