Archive for January, 2023

Poster for the Virginia Woolf in Turkey symposium, “Giving Voice to Woolf,” held Jan. 28, 2023, in Turkey. The symposium included an exhibition, a podcast series, and a performance — all focused on “A Room of One’s Own.” It was held in n collaboration with the British Council Turkey and the Museum Evliyagil.

Virginia Woolf is read and studied worldwide, but she has a newly expanded presence in Turkey due to the non-profit Virginia Woolf Studies in Turkey Initiative.

The organization promotes the study of Woolf and her work, along with the Bloomsbury Group, modernism, and the afterlife of Woolf in Turkey.

According to organizers, “It aims to create further links between Turkish specialists and their counterparts abroad. The Initiative welcomes scholars, writers, translators, artists, performers, publishers, students, and people who share a strong interest in Woolf’s works.”

The non-profit is dedicated to advance Virginia Woolf studies in Turkey from a comparative and critical perspective in several ways:

  • by convening symposiums, conferences, and lecture series; (See the photo at right for details about the first, held today.)
  • by publishing Woolf related studies; and
  • by organizing various informal gatherings and workshops.

Topics to explore

The Initiative will provide a platform for an intellectually rich, open, and collaborative working atmosphere for the Woolfians to explore the following:

  • Virginia Woolf’s works (fictional and non-fictional)
  • Virginia Woolf’s biography
  • Virginia Woolf as a reader, critic, and publisher
  • Virginia Woolf and feminism
  • Virginia Woolf as a philosopher
  • Critical perspectives on Virginia Woolf
  • Afterlife of Virginia Woolf in Turkey
  • Translations of Virginia Woolf’s works into Turkish
  • The Bloomsbury Group and art
  • Virginia Woolf and her contemporaries
  • Tracing Virginia Woolf in Turkish Literature
  • Virginia Woolf in the context of the early twentieth century Britain
  • Other relevant subjects

Co-founders of the non-profit are Mine Özyurt Kılıç, coordinator of the 2017 one-day exhibit at Harvard University, “A Press of One’s Own: Celebrating 100 Years of Virginia and Leonard Woolf’s Hogarth Press,” and Demet Karabulut Dede.

Join and get more information

The initiative welcomes new members and guests. To join the mailing list and/or get more information, email: info@virginiawoolfturkiye.org or Mine Özyurt Kılıç: mine@virginiawoolfturkiye.org or Demet Karabulut Dede: demetkrblt@virginiawoolfturkiye.org

Read Full Post »

Today is Virginia Woolf’s birthday. She would have been 141. And as is customary at this time, I am poring over the eight published diary entries she wrote on or near her birthday between 1897 and 1941.

In 2016, I shared all of the published diary entries she made on her birthday, a post so popular I reposted it the following year.

Last year, I parsed her 1941 entry, comparing her mood during wartime to my mood as the second year of the pandemic came to a close.

This year, though, I am looking at details — the gifts she received, the places she went, what she was reading, and what she was writing. Read on for all that.

But first I share a happy quote — with the kind of twist customary for Woolf — from her diary entry written in 1915, on the day she turned thirty-three and she and Leonard decided to rent Hogarth House and buy a printing press, an endeavor that would come to be known as the Hogarth Press.

I don’t think I’ve had a birthday treat for 10 years; & it felt like one too—being a fine frosty day, everything brisk & cheerful, as it should be, but never is. – The Diary of Virginia Woolf, Vol. I: 1915-1919, p. 28.

What she got

At age 15 in 1897: “a gorgeous Queen Elizabeth — by Dr Creighton,” “Lockharts Life of Scott,” an arm chair, £1, a holder for her stylograph,* a diary, a pocket book – A Passionate Apprentice: The Early Journals 1897-1909, pp. 21-2.

At age 23 in 1905: “a huge china inkpot” – A Passionate Apprentice: The Early Journals 1897-1909, pp. 227-8.

At age 33 in 1915: “a beautiful green purse,” a first edition of The Abbot, and  “a packet of sweets” – The Diary of Virginia Woolf, Vol. I: 1915-1919, p. 28.

At age 36 in 1918: “a fine cow’s horn knife” and a pair of red handknit socks that tied at the ankle – The Diary of Virginia Woolf, Vol. I: 1915-1919, p. 113.

Her diary entries around her birthday after 1918 do not mention gifts.

What she did, what she read, what she wrote

At age 15 in 1897 – What she did: “I went out for a walk round the pond after breakfast with father, it being Nessas drawing day. Went out with Stella to Hatchards about some book for Jack, and then to Regent St. for flowers and fruit for him; then to Wimpole St. to see how he had slept, and then to Miss Hill in Marylebone Rd. Jo [Fisher] was there discussing the plans for Stellas new cottages with Miss Hill. All three learnedly argued over them for half an hour, I sitting on a stool by the fire and surveying Miss Hills legs — Nessa went back to her drawing after lunch, and Stella and I went to Story’s to buy me an arm chair, which is to be Ss present to me — We got a very nice one, and I came straight home, while Stella went on to Wimpole St.” – – A Passionate Apprentice: The Early Journals 1897-1909, pp. 21-2.

At age 23 in 1905 – What she did and what she read:  “Another lazy morning — read however the greater part of my review book, so that will be written tomorrow with luck — & then? . . . Violet to lunch . . . Georges motor after lunch, in which we did various long distance jobs — then home, read my review book, & dinner at 7.30 as we went with Gerald to Peter Pan, Barries play — imaginative & witty like all of his, but just too sentimental — However it was a great treat.” – A Passionate Apprentice: The Early Journals 1897-1909, pp. 227-8.

At age 33 in 1915 – What she did and what she read: “I was then taken up to town, free of charge, & given a treat, first at a Picture Palace, & then at Buszards . . . But to make up, we exactly caught a non-stop train, & I have been very happy reading father on Pope, which is very witty & bright—without a single dead sentence in it.” – The Diary of Virginia Woolf, Vol. I: 1915-1919, p. 28.

At age 36 in 1918 – What she did and what she read: “Barbara came, & together we “dissed” 4 pages, & L. printed off the second 4 at the printers—altogether a fine days work . . . before 7.30 came Clara [Woolf] & the Whithams . . . Writing all the morning, reading & walking the rest of the day.”  – The Diary of Virginia Woolf, Vol. I: 1915-1919, p. 113.

At age 39 in 1921 – What she did and what she wrote: “had tea, & calculated the costs of printing Tchekov; now L. is folding the sheets of his book, & Ralph has gone, & I having taken this out of the press proceed to steal a few minutes to baptise it . . I’m at a crisis in Jacob: want to finish in 20,000 words, written straight off in a frenzy. And I must pull myself together to bring it off.” – The Diary of Virginia Woolf: Volume II: 1920-1924, p. 86.

At age 48 in 1930 – What she did and what she read: “on my birthday we walked among the downs [at Rodmell] . . . At night I read Lord Chaplin’s life.” – The Diary of Virginia Woolf: Volume III: 1925-1930, p 285.

At age 49 in 1931 – What she wrote: “have returned to Waves: & have this instant seen the entire book whole, & how I can finish it–say in under 3 weeks.” – The Diary of Virginia Woolf: Volume IV: 1931-1935, p. 7.

At age 59 in 1941- What she did, what she read, and what she wrote: “A battle against depression, rejection (by Harper’s of my story & Ellen Terry) routed today (I hope) by clearing out kitchen; by sending the article (a lame one) to N.S.: & by breaking into PH 2 days, I think, of memoir writing . . . a good hard rather rocky book–viz: Herbert Fisher . . . . Now to write, with a new nib, to Enid Jones.” – The Diary of Virginia Woolf: Volume V: 1936-1941, pp. 354-5.

Read the full quotes from Woolf’s diaries regarding her birthdays.

*a fountain pen

Twitter celebrates Virginia Woolf’s birthday in advance

Read Full Post »

There seems to be an endless supply of jigsaw puzzles that include a connection to Virginia Woolf.

Well, the supply is probably not endless. But every time I think I have exhausted all avenues in my Woolf puzzle search, a new puzzle appears.

This go-round, I found two. And both connect to Woolf’s 1925 novel Mrs. Dalloway.

Mrs. Dalloway 1

I discovered the first thanks to a Facebook post by Ben Hagen, president of the International Virginia Woolf Society.

It featured a panoramic puzzle from the New York Puzzle Company that measures  39″ x 13″ and depicts an imaginary street scene populated by characters from the novel. The cost of the 1,000-piece “Mrs. Dalloway” is $25.99 on Amazon. But you can buy it for $16.50 on the puzzle company’s website.

Mrs. Dalloway 2

The second “Mrs. Dalloway” is a lithograph and looks much more difficult to complete, as it is made up of words — the words of the novel.

The only image is the profile of a woman’s face superimposed over the text. It comes in two versions: 500 pieces and 1,000 pieces and a variety of colors. The cost of each is $39.

However if puzzling is not your gig, you can purchase the same image — words and all — as a tote, a T-shirt, a blanket, a scarf, a pillow, and more from Litographs.

More Woolf puzzles

For more on Woolf puzzles, visit these posts:

  • Doing jigsaw puzzles with Virginia Woolf,” which Includes

    “Jane Austen’s Book Club” puzzle by eeBoo

  • A puzzling question: Why is Woolf depicted as a blue-eyed blonde?,” which includes a link to eeBoo’s “Jane Austen’s Book Club” puzzle.
  • Two more to add to your stash of Virginia Woolf puzzles, which includes
    • A take-off on the iconic 2008 Barack Obama “Hope” poster featuring Woolf. However, it is no longer available. I was able to obtain the puzzle before it went off-market and completed it this week. It is pictured below.
    • Edward Gorey Book Covers.  It includes the cover of From Beowulf to Virginia Woolf by Robert Manson Myers. It has 1,000 pieces, 20″ x 27″ and is priced at $22.95.
  • Two more for your Virginia Woolf puzzle stash,” which includes:
    • The Re-marks Famous Authors Postage Stamp Collage Puzzle. 1,000 pieces, 26 5/8″ L x 19 1/4″. $17.99. Features a full-color portrait of Woolf as a stamp.
    • Essential Book Covers Puzzle. 1,000 pieces, 27.5″L x 19.7″. $25.99. Features the Vanessa Bell cover of To the Lighthouse. The puzzle is described as including the covers of the “50 Best Classic Books.”

      A Woolf puzzle no longer available that mimics the look and theme of the iconic Barack Obama poster from his 2008 presidential campaign.

Read Full Post »

If you are among the 464 million people worldwide who listen to podcasts — and you love Virginia Woolf — this podcast is for you. It’s “The Virginia Woolf Podcast,” featuring Dr. Karina Jakubowicz and made in association with Literature Cambridge.

In the dozen episodes currently available online and on the podcast app, “The Virginia Woolf Podcast,” features talks with writer, artists, and academics whose work has been influenced by Woolf.

The latest episode, “Bloomsbury in Bronze: A Statue is Unveiled,” features the Nov. 16, 2022, unveiling of the life-size bronze statue of Woolf along the riverside in Richmond. In it, you will hear the voices of sculptress Laury Dizengremel, Woolf’s great niece Emma Woolf, along with Sophie Partridge, great, great niece of Virginia Woolf. You will also see a photo of Jakubowicz sitting charmingly alongside Woolf on her park bench.

That episode pairs well with one that aired in the spring of 2022 where Jakubowicz interviews author Peter Fullager and Dizengremel about the Aurora Metro campaign to bring the Woolf statue to Richmond.

Other episodes on the Literature Cambridge website, as well as the app, include:

  • Jacob’s Room Centenary
  • Caroline Zoob on Virginia Woolf’s Garden
  • Maggie Humm on Talland House
  • Emma Sutton on Virginia Woolf and Classical Music
  • Susan Sellers on Firebird and Vanessa and Virginia
  • and more

Please note that the podcasts are the same on the Literature Cambridge website as they are on the app, but the titles differ.

Read Full Post »

Exterior of the New York Public Library’s Stephen A. Schwarzman Building at Fifth Avenue and 42nd St.

Can’t get to New York City before March 5? No problem. You can view the digital version of the exhibit “Virginia Woolf: A Modern Mind” from your easy chair by logging onto your computer.

Just go to the exhibit web page, scroll down, and click on each individual section of the exhibit in turn.

The sections are:

  1. Early Years
  2. Fiction
  3. Criticism
  4. The Hogarth Press
  5. Legacy

The online component also includes a slide show of 10 photographs that show what the in-person exhibit looks like.

Listen in as authors discuss the exhibit and Woolf

In addition, you can listen to 23 audio tracks, with transcripts, that guide you through the exhibit.

Each features a conversation between Brandon Taylor, author of Real Life (2020) and Francesca Wade, author of Square Haunting: Five Women, Freedom and London Between the Wars (2020), as they discuss and dissect the exhibit’s individual components.

Shop Woolf

You can also shop the the Woolf collection available in the library’s online gift shop. It includes everything from notebooks to books to jewelry to tote bags.

Background on the Woolf exhibit

“Virginia Woolf: A Modern Mind” is the library’s first major exhibition to focus on Woolf since 1993. This biographical exhibit of more than 100 items provides an intimate view of the author’s life and creative process, using her personal notebooks and diaries, family photographs, and unpublished letters.

It is drawn entirely from the library’s holdings, one of the most important collections of Woolf’s writings in the world.

Read more.

Interior shot of the New York Public Library’s Stephen A. Schwarzman Building at Fifth Avenue and 42nd St.

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »

%d bloggers like this: