Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf

1487 Words6 Pages
The psychological effect the city environment has on both, the characters and authors, can be seen in Virginia Woolf’s Mrs Dalloway and T.S.Elliot’s the wasteland. The lack of unity of Elliot’s text has lead critics to feel the writing is far too fragmented:

My nerves are bad to-night. Yes, bad. Stay with me. Speak to me. Why do you never speak? Speak. What are you thinking of? What thinking? What. I never know what you are thinking. Think. (TWL: 110)

However, as Gareth Reeves suggests in the book T.S.Elliot: The wasteland ‘unprecedented conditions of chaos and disintegration demand unprecedented methods of poetic fragmentation’ (16). Critics, who felt the poem lack form, may have over looked the fact that Elliot has purposely designed the poem as such. ‘My nerves are bad tonight. Yes bad’ sounds like spoken English, which is not always spoken in complete sentences. Add to the fact that the person speaking sounds unnerved to the point of not bearing to be by herself should her thoughts reveal reality.(Selby,106) It is as if the stress of the city has finally poured into the speakers thoughts, making the speaker feel the need to self-reassure.

Point one: 2-v

The modernist perception of a person being produced from a place fits neatly into Virginia Wolfe’s Mrs Dalloway. The book’s namesake if often portrayed as a person framed by her emotions, worried how ‘something awful was about to happen’(Woolf,1). Although the city has allowed more freedom, such as to roam unescorted, being in an alien environment to which Clarissa was bought up in has had a psychological effect. By comparison, Mr Dalloway is externally viewed as a strong character. Although, Richard is good at remaining in control, he has his own issues. Even with h...

... middle of paper ...

...novels. Basingstoke: Macmillan, 1998. Print

Reeves, G. T.S.Eliot's The Waste Land. Hemel Hempstead: Harvester Wheatsheaf, 1994. Print.

Ried, S. Mrs Dalloway and To the Lighthouse, Virginia Woolf. Basingstoke: Macmillan, 1993. Print

Roe,S. Sellers,S. The Cambridge companion to :Virginia Woolf. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press,2010. Print

Selby,N. T.S.Eliot: The Waste Land: A readers guide to essential criticism .Basingstoke: Macmillan, 1999. Print.

Wallace, J. Beginning Modernism. Manchester: Manchester University Press,2011.Print

"The Waste Land." 1922. Modernism: An Anthology (Blackwell Anthologies). Ed. Lawrence Rainey. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell, 2005. 123-42. Print.

Willson, R. "Is There Hope in The Waste Land?" Critical Essays on :The Waste Land. Essex: Longman, 1998. 82-93. Print.

Woolf, V. Mrs. Dalloway. London: Wordsworth Editions, 2003. Print.
Open Document