Virginia Woolf (1882-1941)
A selective list of literary criticism for the English novelist, reviewer, and essayist Virginia Woolf, favoring signed articles by recognized scholars and articles published in peer-reviewed sources
introduction & biography
NY Times articles from 3 April 1941 ["Virginia Woolf believed dead"] and 19 April 1941 ["Virginia Woolf's body found"].
Mepham, John. "Virginia Woolf." A substantial introduction to Virginia Woolf. Also, Spurr, Barry. The Bloomsbury Group (1904-1939), whose members included Virginia Woolf, her sister, the artist Vanessa Bell, Virginia Woolf's husband, the writer Leonard Woolf, the artist Duncan Grant, the art critic Roger Fry, the novelist E. M. Forster, and the biographer Lytton Strachey. Literary Encyclopedia [subscription service].
Discussion questions for Virginia Woolf's A Room of One's Own, prepared by professor Catherine Lavender for a college class.
The NY Times archives on Virginia Woolf contain extensive material, including newspaper articles and reviews from her novels "Mrs. Dalloway" (1925); "The Common Reader" (1925); "To The Lighthouse" (1927); "Orlando" (1928); "The Waves" (1931); "The Years" (1937); "Between The Acts" (1941); "The Captain's Death Bed and Other Essays" (1950), reviewed by Katherine Anne Porter; "A Writer's Diary" (1954), reviewed by Elizabeth Bowen.
"The Virginia Woolf of 'The Hours' Angers the Real One's Fans." By Patricia Cohen in the New York Times, 15 Feb. 2003.
"An off-beat adaptation: Orlando." Article by Timotheos Roussosm compares the Woolf's novel Orlando with Sally Potter's film version. Philament 3, April 2004.
DeSalvo, Louise. Virginia Woolf: The Impact of Childhood Sexual Abuse on Her Life and Work (1989). A review in the NY Times, which begins, "The danger in analyzing lives and literature according to selective evidence or a single set of experiences is that the essential spirit of people and their creative products can suffer severe misinterpretation if tucked neatly into Procrustean beds. Such a reductionist reading is at the heart of Louise DeSalvo's thesis in Virginia Woolf: The Impact of Childhood Sexual Abuse on Her Life and Work."
Lewis, Wyndham. "Virginia Woolf: "Mind" and "Matter" on the Plane of a Literary Controversy." An old essay by Wyndham Lewis, on idealists and materialists in English literature, which casts Woolf as the exemplary idealist. "In the present chapter I am compelled, however, to traverse the thorny region of feminism, or of militant feminine feeling. I have chosen the back of Mrs. Woolf--if I can put it in this inelegant way--to transport me across it. I am sure that certain critics will instantly object that Mrs. Woolf is extremely insignificant--that she is a purely feminist phenomenon--that she is taken seriously by no one any longer today, except perhaps by Mr. and Mrs. Leavis--and that, anyway, feminism is a dead issue."
Marder, Herbert. A review of The Measure of Life: Virginia Woolf's Last Years. Says reviewer Carolyn Kuebler, Marder is most interested in Woolf's radical and subversive ideas. "What he shows us is how Woolf's always-powerful sense of anger at political and social injustices grew more and more urgent as she grew older, and how she grew increasingly desperate to manifest this rage in her work." Rain Taxi Winter 2000.
Scott, Lynda. "Similarities Between Virginia Woolf and Doris Lessing," focuses on their shared distrust of, and fascination with, the workings of memory; and their construction of a personal sense of selfhood. Deep South 3, 2 (Winter 1997).
Tetterton, Kelly. "Virginia Woolf's Orlando: The Book as Critic." A brief paper on the paperback book covers of the editions of Orlando, and what they reveal about critical perceptions of the book. Conference paper, 1995.
Selected Bindings by Virginia Woolf. An online exhibit from the personal library of Leonard and Virginia Woolf. Special Collections of Washington State Univ.
The International Virginia Woolf Society Bibliography. The Society publishes online its annual bibliographies from 1996-2001, a complete list of all books, journal articles, book chapters, dissertations and theses on Virginia Woolf for the year; with short summaries of the most important books of the year.
Charleston: An artist's home and garden. The web site for the Charleston, the home of Virginia Woolf's sister, Vanessa Bell, and a gathering place for the artists, writers and intellectuals of the Bloomsbury Group, a group that included Clive Bell, David Garnett, Maynard Keynes, Virginia and Leonard Woolf, E.M. Forster, Lytton Strachey, Roger Fry, and Duncan Grant.
1998-2012 by Jan Pridmore