Student or Learner
Why novel is often describe as a female genre?
Throughout the eighteenth century the novel was considered the "lower" level pastime of the idle noblewoman in the salon. Educated gentlemen were keen to be seen reading or speaking about poetry and classical drama, but the novel, in prose, with the stories of ordinary human beings' trials and tribulations, were like "As the world turns," "General Hospital" or "the Young an the Restless", mere soaps.
Even many of the authors were women, notably Jane Austen.
Nowadays, people realize these women were on the cutting edge of a new genre, of high quality, and men back then read them too, more secretively.
After Dickens, it was no longer as seen a woman's genre.
Although women might have been the earliest readers, the first writers were mostly men - Defoe, Fielding, Richardson. And George Elliot and the Bronte's still thought it advantageous to use men's names in the mid nineteenth century. Perhaps there were good women novelists in the eighteenth century who just couldn't get published.
There were not many women educated in Latin and Greek in those days so, with the increase in leisure time due partly to the Industrial Revolution, women became avid readers of novels.