Essay On Mrs Dalloway

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Mrs. Dalloway is a complex novel covered only in the matter of one day through which Woolf unravels many different sides to the human psyche. The book is set in mid June, London 1923 post world war Ι. The novel follows Socialite Clarissa Dalloway on a course of one day as she takes care of some last minute preparations for a party set for later that evening. Throughout the morning, Clarissa reflects on her past and all choices that have led her to present day. The novel conveniently intermingles two seemingly unconnected events during this day, the first being of Clarissa Dalloway and her need to impress everyone with parties and her realization of living life for others and not herself. The second story involves a shell-shocked veteran, Septimus, who cannot handle everyday society and eventually falls to his own demise. Some believe that Septimus is Clarissa’s doppelganger. Where Clarissa is the common English socialite who goes on living as if the war was of no importance, Septimus plays the darker side of Clarissa. A side that is deep within her, where she knows she is deeply unhappy with some of the choices she has made. Many individuals have attacked this novel. For it was written in the 1920s when many of Woolf’s ideas where not lightly talked about. Issues like homosexuality, suicide, and war were not subjects to be discussed openly. The topic of homosexuality in this novel is slightly suggested, however prevalent enough to earn the attention of some critics. Many people such as Elaine Fulton, believe that Miss Kilman— a minor character in the story— is read as a “lesbian figure with no place in the 1920s.” There are also hints of homosexuality in Clarissa and Septimus as well. “But all that evening she could not take h... ... middle of paper ... ...ime. She was a true visionary in the exploration of the mind. Her concept on suicide was not to be made a mockery of but to simply enlighten the world of the maddening events in one’s mind that can lead to one’s own death. Lastly, we have the war. I can see how readers may have been angry at how coldhearted Woolf portrayed the socialites, but she simply showed two sides to the story. Having already seen—in Septimus— the mental devastation Woolf also decided to show the more oblivious side. The vision of socialites made people understand that they had taken the effects of the war to lightly and perhaps they were not ready to hear what she had to say. Overall, everything in Woolf’s novel was a depiction of how ahead of her time she was. She may have intertwined Mrs. Dalloway with controversial subjects but it was only done to enlighten the public on everyday issues.
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