An American writer and feminist, she is known for her science fiction and fantasy novels, as well as for her works of literary criticism. Her best-known titles include How to Suppress Women's Writing and The Female Man. The latter work is a satirical novel with a Utopian setting.
She graduated from Cornell University in 1957. She later received a graduate degree from the Yale School of Drama.
She received both a Hugo Award and a Nebula Award.
She was raised in the Bronx by Evarett and Bertha Russ.
She studied under Vladimir Nabokov at Cornell University.