Woolf, Virginia. (1882 - 1941).
W o r k
- with her husband, Leonard Woolf, founded the Hogarth Press (1917 - 1946), publishing among others T. S. Eliot’s works
- herself concerned with the problems of personal identity and personal relationships, the significance of time, change, and memory
- interested in a dissipation of distinctions within a pattern of change and decay in nature as well as in human psyche
- preoccupied with women characters, especially women artists, tends to introduce characters standing for herself
- handles the stream of consciousness so that she brings into prose fiction something of the rhythms and imagery of lyric poetry
C r i t i c i s m :
Modern Fiction (1919):
- an essay rejecting the ‘materialism’ of Arnold Bennett, H. G. Wells, or John Galsworthy in favour of a more delicate rendering of consciousness
A Room of One’s Own (1929):
- a study on the necessity of a private space and private income for the development of a woman writer’s creativity
- a tribute to the English novelists who have established the tradition of women’s writing, e.g. George Eliot, and others
Three Guineas (1938):
- a collection of essays on the position of especially professional women
F i c t i o n :
Mrs Dalloway (1925):
- her most complete representation of a woman character’s mind and her most thorough experiment with the technique of interior monologue
- concerned with the problem of identity
To the Lighthouse (1927):
- concerned with the contemporary discontinuities, fragmentations, and disintegrations in both the external and the spiritual world
- represents the nature of conscious and unconscious mental activity and relates it to a more universal pattern
- her most light-hearted novel, on her relation with the woman she loved
- an exploration of a ‘masculine’ freedom traditionally denied to women
The Waves (1931):
- a series of insights into the identities of characters
The Years (1937):
- her longest novel, on the consequences of waiting, learning, and ageing
Between the Acts (1941):
- her most stylised novel, concerned with an amateur woman writer
- contrast women’s ‘epiphanies’ x the material world of men
(Woolf in 1902. Photo: Wikimedia Commons).
AuthorBorn Adeline Virginia Stephen. Married Woolf. (1882 - 1941). British.
WorkNovelist. Critic. Publisher. Author of Mrs Dalloway (1925).
GenresModernism. Fiction and criticism.
Abrams, Meyer Howard, ed. The Norton Anthology of English Literature. New York: W. W. Norton, 1993.
Barnard, Robert. Stručné dějiny anglické literatury. Praha: Brána, 1997.
Baugh, Albert C. ed. A Literary History of England. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1967.
Coote, Stephen. The Penguin Short History of English Literature. London: Penguin, 1993.
Sampson, George. The Concise Cambridge History of English Literature. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1946.
Sanders, Andrew. The Short Oxford History of English Literature. New York: Clarendon Press, 1994.
"Examine for a moment an ordinary mind on an ordinary day. The mind receives a myriad of impressions--trivial, fantastic, evanescent, or engraved with the sharpness of steel. From all sides they come, an incessant shower of innumerable atoms."
From Modern Fiction (1919).