In recent times there has been a renewed interest in Virginia Woolf and her work, from the Broadway play, “Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” to the Academy award nominated film “The Hours” starring Nicole Kidman. This recent exposure, along with the fact that I have ancestors from England , has sparked my interest in this twentieth century British novelist.
During the early part of the twentieth century, artists and writers saw the world in a new way. Famed British novelist Virginia Woolf was very sensitive to this change, for she felt that human relationships such as ones between a husband and wife of master and servant were shifting, due to all of the political, religious, and social changes. These, of course, transformed into modifications in literature (Richter 3,4).
Conventional forms of writing did not portray truth, but rather dealt with certain aspects of life that were distorted and then pieced together via descriptions, coincidences, and transition passages (Blackstone 13). Feminine sensibility was an aspect that could be brought into the novel, and therefore Woolf employed new forms and techniques to her novels (Bernard 12). Through these changes, she consciously made the decision to change the novel from a genre that was developed and dominated by men, to a form that would depict the “movement of things under the surface--the free play of thought, emotion, insight” (Blackstone 12-13). Due to the transforming atmosphere of the time, Woolf was allowed to explore new territories.
At the thrust of Virginia Woolf's writing was the creation of reality. “The center or meeting place for experience was, to Virginia Woolf, the moment—a cross-section of consciousness in which perception and feelings conv...
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Marder, Herbert. Feminism & Art, A Study of Virginia Woolf. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1968.
Naremore, James. “The World Without a Self: Virginia Woolf and the Novel.” Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism. Ed. Sharon K. Hall. Detroit: Gale Research, Vol. 5, 1981.
Richter, Harvena. Virginia Woolf, The Inward Voyage. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1970.
Woolf, Virginia. Mrs. Dalloway. New York: Harcourt, Brace & World, 1925.
Virginia Woolf. The Literature Network. 22 Jan 2005. <http://www.online-literature.com/virginia_woolf/>
Virginia Woolf. Wikipedia Encyclopedia. 22 Jan 2005. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Virginia_Woolf>
“Virginia Woolf.” Encarta 98 Encyclopedia. CD-ROM. Microsoft, 1994.
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