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To the Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf - Book Report/Review Example

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This review "To the Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf" explores creative life V. Woolf who used the theme of womanhood throughout her literary work. This novel "To the Lighthouse" could be set as an example of how emotional dependence upon men can be greater than the intellectual dependence…
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To the Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf
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Download file to see previous pages Does this style predispose Virginia Woolf as a feminist writer because she was female and wrote about issues that were important to women? Is she still a feminist if her emotional dependence upon men was greater than her intellectual dependence? Or through current retrospect, do we see her as a champion of feminism because she overcame the prevailing male attitudes within her family and society to write about what she thought was essential? Critics offer the opinion that “…her life has come to stand for a great deal; it has become a heavily loaded symbol in the current dialogues over gender, class, madness, and marriage. The famously gifted, original, neurotic, courageous, difficult, and very imperfect human being she once was has disappeared…”.
Virginia Woolf gained prominence during the first-wave of political feminism in the early 20th century, but the major focus of this effort revolved around suffrage. She has been portrayed as a feminist, but her writing supports idealist views that humans, in general, should be free to pursue activities that make them whole, regardless of the sexual orientation, gender, or culture. Eyal Amirane asserts that biology is not destiny, and the use of specific language is not synonymous with having a feminist philosophy, "Thus feminist analysis can take a textual form that is not bound to the body, though it is already (always) about the body it takes place not on the writer's body but in the body of the text" (Amerine, np). A writer can be of either sex, since art is created in the mind first, and passed through the body of the artist. When Woolf tells us that, "a woman must have money and a room of her own if she is going to write", she intimates to us that there is no need to establish a political philosophy, just the need for privacy and economic support. (Lavender, np). Woolf did not embrace a specific political ideology and was ambiguous about suffrage, but still believed in being feminine, and her definition meant assurance by allowing " women the fundamental right to control their own lives and income" (Allen, np).
In Mrs. Dalloway, Clarissa wants to perform purposeful roles-wife, mother, lover, and hostess, with aplomb. The role created for her character is one of a strong feminine tradition. She is artificial and shallow but tries to be everything to everyone. Her party is a tribute to the prestige of her husband and family's reputation. Her selfish attitude and demeanor exemplify the divisions in social class, the acceptable exclusions, and how snobbish women can be towards each other. Clarissa is a strong protagonist and she is stereotypical in her assertions and behavior. We are privy to the inner emotional workings of the characters, but within the context of this novel these are not special or unique (Crawford, np).
This novel might be considered an example of feminine writing, but not feminism. This work does not espouse a feminist point of view. The context is about everyday life and events, plain and ordinary, and issues that might be relevant to the concepts of feminism are not dynamically situated or present in this work. ...Download file to see next pages Read More
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