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kindle Î A Room of One's Own Paperback read ✓ A Room of One's Own is an extended essay by Virginia Woolf First published on the 24th of October 1929 the essay was based on a series of lectures she delivered at Newnham College and Girton College two women's colleges at Cambridge University in October 1928 While this extended essay in University in October 1928 While this extended essay in fact employs a fictional narrator and narrative to explore women both as writers and characters in fiction the manuscript for the delivery of the series of lectures titled Wom Reading my first work by Virginia Woolf was just what the reading doctor ordered after my frustrating experience with Kawabata over this past weekend In the last few days I have been organizing my reading challenges for next year and decided to get a jump start on women's history as well as a January group read in catching up on classics by reading Woolf Although written ninety years ago Woolf could be discussing the status of women authors today Her work remains timely and was a pure joy to readMary Beton is roaming the Oxbridge University library in search of uality works written by women authors This is the task put forth to her by her professors and she is determined to do good by her gender Yet as Woolf writing as Beton points out this is no small task although she believes that Beton is up for the challenge Until recently in Woolf's time women were denied access to universities as well as two necessities for writing five hundred pounds a year in expenses and a room of one's own in which to write uninterruptedly A woman's station in life was to take care of one's children and other housekeeping tasks Only the rich were able to write as they had nannies to care for their children and writing as a profession was not accessible to the average woman The shots fired in 1914 changed the role of women in British society; however as men went off to fight in the Great War and women were expected to take on jobs outside of the home that were often only employed by men The women's movement in Europe had begun followed shortly after by women's suffrage in England in 1919 Writing ten years after these developments Woolf points out that despite enjoying these gains in society women still have a long way to go until they are to be considered on eual literary footing as menWell versed in literary history Woolf cites many examples in European literature to point out the path women have taken to get where they are in the early 20th century She starts with an pointed anecdote if Shakespeare had a sister Woolf notes that in the 16th century long before the women's revolution intelligent women would not have been encouraged in reading or writing in any shape or form Perhaps if this woman was intelligently inclined she might have peeked at her brother's work Yet any other avenues would have been closed to her unless she possessed a rebellious streak and followed her famous brother to his Globe Theater and immersed herself in his work With roles in plays closed off to her she would have died a pauper in a common grave Having no access to education the women's space was in the home This changed with Aphra BehnWoolf goes on to point out that famous writers as the Brontes Jane Austen and Mary Shelley have Aphra Behn to thank as she was the first British woman to write as a profession Her work may not be as famous as that of her literary descendants but it paved the way so that they could write the now classic books including Jane Eyre and Pride and Prejudice that are still enjoyed by many today Woolf takes it a step further noting that other pioneers such as George Sand and George Eliot felt safer writing under men's pseudonyms They did so because in the early 19th century all but a few literary avenues were still closed to women Even Jane Austen took twenty years to become published for the first time and women writing when she did were told that if they wrote at all it should be as poets rather than novelists In a pointed barb toward the establishment Woolf notes that had these women been men they would have been as revered throughout Europe as Tolstoy and their work rather than War and Peace would be considered the 19th century novelThroughout the novella Woolf's feminism is on display She encourages women to have less children so that they are able to do work in addition to caring for their children and housework She also points out that by achieving higher levels of education that women should be than capable of writing great novels She believes that in one hundred years after the publication of her essay that the amount of books written by men and women should be about eual reflecting on their actual percentages of the population While this may be true today ninety years later women still have a way to go until their classic books are read as much as those of their male counterparts At the beginning of 2017 I had set out to read 75% of all books by women authors The percentages fell to around 5050 what Woolf had encouraged in this novella As noticed in my experience woman and men write differently and about vastly different topics so even if I read four books in a row by women authors I find my personal pendulum swinging back toward the men I believe as Woolf that 5050 is a marker to strive for as this represents an accurate percentage of society A Room of One's Own has given me intriguing food for thought as I plan my upcoming reading year and should offer poignant discussions in a genre that still at times struggles to find uality women authors Suffice it to say the frustrating feeling I had from this past weekend is gone5 stars

reader ☆ A Room of One's Own ✓ Virginia Woolf

A Room of One's Own is an extended essay by Virginia Woolf First published on the 24th of October 1929 the essay was based on a series of lectures she delivered at Newnham College and Girton College two women's colleges at Cambridge There are so many books that one ‘just knows’ what they are going to be about I have always ‘known’ about this book and ‘knew’ what it would be about Feminist rant right? Oh these people do so preach to the choir don’t they? Why do they hate men so much? In the end they are no different to the male chauvinists they are attacking Why can’t they just be even handed?That none of this is the case of course does not matter at all because reiterating received wisdom seems to be all that is necessary today – read 99% of the critiues of The God Delusion and the horrifying thing you will find is either a mindless acceptance or a mindless rejection of Dawkins It is enough to fill me with near complete despairThe blurb on the back of the Penguin edition of this book says that this is “one of the greatest feminist polemics of the century” There is a uote too from Hermione Lee apparently Woolf’s greatest biographer which reads “fierce energetic humourous” Look I really loved this book and would recommend it whole heartedly – but it is none of those thingsA polemic is a strong verbal or written attack – to say this book is even an attack is really stretching the friendship This is the most mild of books Its central argument is that women need money of their own and a room of their own with a lock on the door if they want to write How can one really be ‘fierce’ if that is all one is going to argue? She ends with a uote from a man who provides a list of the greatest poets of the last couple of hundred years c1900 of which Keats was the only one who was not either a university person or of independent meansSo I guess her recommendation is that if you want to write you need to be independently wealthy – something I haven’t uite achieved yet But eminently sensible advice all the sameThis book is based on a series of lectures she gave to women at Cambridge Uni on Women and Fiction and it is a delight that rather then make this a polemic she actually makes this a work of fiction – creating a series of Marys who go off into the world and be idol – as this is one of the criteria necessary for writing great fiction no matter what you genitalia are up to and part of the reason why being wealthy helpsShe also says that the best fiction is not written by men or women but by men or women who have lost a sense that they are writing as men or women That writing that focuses too closely on explaining past hurts – however well justified – ends up being bad writing That fiction when it is done properly has a truth of its own that ought to be authentic and followed by the writer despite any agenda of the writer This is such a lovely idea – and much interestingly about fiction than about women And this is as it ought to beSome of Woolf’s writing – I’ve also just finish reading To the Lighthouse – feels heavy now some of her paragraphs go for three pages and that can make reading her feel a bit of a struggle – but she writes so beautifully and has the annoying habit of making sense that it is no wonder that so many people have become so annoyed with herIn the end I think it is only possible for people to say this is a fierce book or a polemic on the basis of their views not Virginia’s Her views on feminism expressed in the book today seem rather depressingly self evident and expressed in a light and very careful way But to a society that is not prepared to listen even the mildest expression of unpopular views will seem harsh polemical and well just plain wrongNot the book I suspected infinitely better than that

Virginia Woolf ✓ A Room of One's Own doc

A Room of One's OwnEn and Fiction and hence the essay are considered nonfiction The essay is seen as a feminist text and is noted in its argument for both a literal and figural space for women writers within a literary tradition dominated by patriarch Words fail me as I seek to express what I think of Virginia Woolf Or to sum up in a few measly paragraphs a book that may just have shattered into a million pieces all my illusions about the art of writing and reshaped my whole perspectiveHave you ever imagined a disembodied voice whispering into your ears the wisdom of the ages as you flipped through the pages of a book? how often have you conjured up the vision of the writer talking to you teaching you humoring you and coaxing you to open your mind to newer things as you read a book? Have you felt a book stop being just a book somewhere and instead appear as a beacon of enlightenment that shines down the light of knowledge upon your darkened ignorant soul? This is how profoundly A Room of One's Own affected meI will adopt this book as my writing Bible I will read this every time I feel dejected sad or terribly lost And I will read this again and again until I can ascertain that the message the very spirit of this fine piece of writing has been assimilated into the core of my being Okay now that I've gotten the stream of incoherent gushing out of the way let me try and bestow on this review some semblance of real meaningIt will be irreverent of me to call A Room of One's Own a mere essay or something that grew out of a lecture given at Girton College Cambridge This is the essence of Virginia Woolf herself captured at the peak of her glory all within 111 pages This is Woolf reaching out from within the confines of this book and handing out to you the precious fruits of years of her hard work her thoughts her research her observations her inferences her views So what if it is about the subject of women? and writing? Aren't women one half of the human race? The so called better half at that What is so wrong about getting to know about the history of their evolution as thinkers as composers as sentient beings with the power of expression but without the power to assert themselves?So you better read it Yes you the silently scoffing and judging member of the 'stronger' sex Yes you too Because it does not only talk about women writers but life itself and the art of writingThe blurb and the countless reviews famously identify this book as one of the greatest feminist polemics of the last century I beg to differ It will be unfair to tag it with the label of a polemic a word with a highly negative connotation Because Virginia Woolf's aim instead was to dispel all forms of negativity from the vocation of writing Sure she gives us the feminist side of things but her voice is not full of seething rage or resentment but balanced logical sardonic and even humorous at timesThis is Woolf's homage to the spirit of those unsung heroines of the distant past who may have written poems songs and ballads but were forced to adopt anonymity simply because it was unacceptable for a woman to write Those imaginative souls who may have wanted desperately to write but could not because society thrust gender specific roles of the mother and wife on them and did not even bother educating themWhat if Shakespeare had an eually talented sister but who could never be another Shakespeare herself because she would have been mocked at had she expressed a desire to write plays or poetry? Woolf asks us to spare a moment and reflect on the sad fate of these martyrs history has not bothered to record When however one reads of a witch being ducked of a woman possessed by devils of a wise woman selling herbs or even of a very remarkable man who had a mother then I think we are on the track of a lost novelist a suppressed poet of some mute and inglorious Jane Austen some Emily Brontë who dashed her brains out on the moor or mopped and mowed about the highways crazed with the torture that her gift had put her to Indeed I would venture to guess that Anon who wrote so many poems without singing them was often a woman She makes it clear to us that Jane Austen was a clever clever writer because she never tried to adopt the style of a man's writing or his sentence construction She created her own And with a rather limited range of experiences in the real world at her command she could neither have written about bloody wars nor about politics spheres women still hadn't earned the right to enter Instead she wrote what she saw and witnessed in the sitting chambers of the houses of the gentry This rekindles my interest in Jane Austen which had started to wane over the past few yearsShe also repeatedly stresses on how a woman needs a room of her own and money to be able to write A room of her own because she needs a breathing space where she could revel in the knowledge of her identity as a person as a woman as a thinker over her identity as a dutiful daughter or wife or mother Although I disagree with her assertion of having money as a necessary criterion for aiming to become a writer I think financial independence could have been a metaphor for empowerment of women or a reference to freedom from having to rely on someone else especially a man and to be able to decide the course of your own lifeWoolf ends her essay by exhorting both men and women to take up their pens and write laying emphasis on the necessity of stepping outside the limits of narrow gender identities and be the writer with an androgynous mind instead the one capable of uniting the spirit of both the man and woman and letting it reflect in one's craftAnd it is at this point I felt truly thankful for her 500 pounds a year and a room of her own Since that may have after all allowed this marvelous deeply enlightening piece of writing to come into existence in the first place