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March Book: A Room of One’s Own by Virginia Woolf.

Blog: 03/30/23


Decades later we find ourselves refreshed by the thoughts and ideas of a pioneer in women’s rights. Things have changed though, right? A Room of Ones Own is an inquisitive novel written by Virginia Woolf at the turn of the 20th century. Women were beginning to find themselves at their own creative forefront, beginning to unleash centuries of pent up vision with the pains of its chains following close behind. We begin by analyzing the contextual style used by Woolf, through M2’s author summary. “Her stream of consciousness storytelling was an innovation”, writes M2. To elaborate Woolf spoke her conscious thought, bringing her inner dialogue and intermingling it within the rhetoric of her writing. With K and M in agreeance we found the complex thought process a tough read, and it was. Not only was her style of writing exquisitely intricate for her time but the content of her novel raised eyebrows that haven’t dropped to this day.

Candidly speaking, Woolf was a feminist whom stole the show in leading with questions of why men only wrote about women for centuries and what it meant to be a woman. Women were meant to be seen not heard, creativity, autonomous thought were not permitted and were met with abuse and mental derailment. We seem to be at a place in society where the pains of such derailment are still in their healing processes. One must quip about the reference Woolf makes to an androgynous mind, where for the purpose of creative thought a person should have married their female and male tendencies within their psyche. M2 and P found themselves referencing their tomboyish natures in childhood and what it could mean to marry the sexes internally. One would say the marriage is one of understanding rather than outward exercise. A woman whom has held herself with the soft nature of feminity while structuring her understandings of the world through a masculine perspective and vice versa. Then there is the subtle but over expansive topic of Woolf’s depression. In referencing a letter she wrote to her husband at her chosen end, she stated “And I shan't recover this time. I begin to hear voices, and I can't concentrate.” Throughout her depression, she wrote, throughout her marriage to a man when she preferred a woman, she wrote. One could only wonder would she have written in a less conspicuous way had her true hearts desires been met. Or did the centuries of the female imaginations imprisonment and the echoes of it in her time motivate her to ask the unaskable.

Regardless she asked, and one can only thank her bravery in doing so, for had she not would I be writing today? Would we have been further propelled through time in our quest for female dare I say human empowerment. For does it not diminish an entire species to make less an entire half of its populace? Where were all the female genius’s?, Woolf quipped. They were expressively hidden behind marital duties, child rearing, society pleasing. If a female were to be a genius did they need a room of their own in which to cultivate their creative endeavors? “It was the flaw in the center that rotted them “only a woman” “as good as a man”. Woolf debated the obsession with the need for separation of annoyance with the challenges man made for women. Should writing, be left to itself without the constant deliberations of if only I had it all then I would do it all. This meeting was one of intense contemplation, showing that Woolf held her own in a time when she was meant not to. “But I maintain that she would come if we worked for her, and that so to work, even in poverty and obscurity, is worthwhile”. With her ending I follow with mine in saying we write because she wrote, we read, we drive, we learn and for that I tip my hat to Virginia Woolf and give great thanks, and to this room however humble or grandeur, that I must write.

Author/Blogger: Jenee.

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