Breaking Convention in A Room of One's Own Essay

Breaking Convention in A Room of One's Own Essay

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Breaking Convention in A Room of One's Own


New discoveries and exciting breakthroughs are all made at the expense of contradicting old rules and ideas. In order for Earth to be round, it could no longer be flat. Revolutions in literature, science, and countries are always filled with conflicts and contradictions to traditional conventions. In this sense, Virgina Woolf's essay A Room of One's Own can be called a revolution. Woolf breaks nearly all the rules of essay writing in her argumentative essay. She addresses the reader in the first person, tells the reader that she is lying, focuses on unnecessary details, and even contradicts herself from time to time. Why does Woolf, a competent writer, decide to write this way? Perhaps, her unorthodox style supports her perception on the difficulties that exists in women becoming serious writers. Her writing style constructs a relationship between her essay and women writers; it shows the reader that for women to become a writer without a "a room of one's own" is just as unconventional as her writing style. With both her words and her unique writing style, Woolf presents her view on women's writing.

In a serious essay, a point or an argument should be made. This is why a writer writing a serious essay finds it necessary to shower his reader with logical reasons and facts. A typical writer wants the reader to examine, if not accept, the writer's point of view; however, Woolf claims that "lies will flow from [her] lips" in her essay.(720) Not too many writers will come right out and tell their readers that they intend to lie in their essays. The persuasiveness of an essay is not going to be enhanced by having the writer admit that he is lying. Because writers want to be as factua...


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... as an intellect. Woolf has set up the essay so that the argument is presented in the essay but conveyed to the reader through the subtle messages hidden in the stylistic and the structural set up of the essay. And perhaps she has one more intention for setting up her essay in such a way; perhaps she wants to remind women that they can turn their disadvantages into advantages, as she did with the presumably awful style in her essay. Since women have not had a voice in this make dominated would for so long, it is almost certain that they will have a different voice from the men. This different voice, that has been oppressed for so long, is bound to carry novel ideas, and women, the source of this hidden voice, are the only ones capable of sharing these new views with the world.

Works Cited:

Woolf, Virginia. A Room of One's Own. San Diego: Harcourt, Inc., 1929.

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