Archive for the ‘Woolf blog’ Category

Virginia Woolf is a regular topic among bloggers. Here is a list of blog posts we sighted that were published online during the month of August. Not counting yours truly, of course.

  1. Rambling about Inspiration on Vega’s Voice
  2. On Virginia … on To a Dusty Shelf We Aspire, where the author has six Woolf posts, each a chosen quote from a Woolf novel. You can find links to all six here.
  3. Virginia Woolf
  4.  in Richmond and Bloomsbury: London  on Dr. Tony Shaw’s blog
  5. Good Reads: My Week with Virginia Woolf « as i see it on the Perpetual Flaneur
  6. Virginia Woolf’s First Car on the Virginia Woolf Blog
  7. Vita Sackville-West’s Love Letter to Virginia Woolf on Brain Pickings
  8. Night and Day by Virginia Woolf on Book Snob
  9. What Virginia Woolf Taught Me About Mindfulness on Remade by Hand
  10. Virginia Wolf, a picture book on Just Another Step to Take
  11. Virginia Woolf & Julia Child on The Daily Glean
  12. Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf on From Kafka to Kindergarten
  13. How True Virginia Woolf on Polly: Writings and Witterings
  14. Virginia Woolf’s Writer’s Diary on Kitchen Table Writers
  15. Butter Sculptures, Virginia Woolf, and Runaway Calfs! on Historypin
  16. Kate O’Rourke, Virginia Woolf, Samuel Beckett: Wait & Party — Nonfiction by Michael Bryson on Numéro Cinq

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I must be crazy.

I already spend too much time on my laptop — way too much on some days. And now I’ve gone and opened a Tumblr blog.

I can only guess what this will do to my free time. Whatever that is.

What got into me? Good question. I took a look at the Tumblr blogs of Hearts Asunder, Megan Branch and Ann Fernald, clicked on the archive link of each, and I was hooked. It just looks so cool.

See what I mean?

My new Tumblr blog, Woolfwriter, will give me a place to post small bits about Woolf, as well as miscellaneous stuff I come across that I want to share.

Besides what I post on Facebook and Twitter, I mean.

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The beauty of the world, which is soon to perish, has two edges, one of laughter, one of anguish, cutting the heart asunder. – Virginia Woolf, A Room of One’s Own

A new collaborative online writing project called Hearts Asunder launches tomorrow.

It will use 400-word blog posts to illustrate the Woolf quote above by “smashing ideas from her writing against items from today’s pop culture to help yank her charm and relevance into the 21st Century,” according to creator Brianna Goldberg.

The self-described “lit-loving Canadian writer and radio producer” will curate the project, which will run from March 1-28, the 70th anniversary of Woolf’s death. It is conceived of as a commemoration of her death as well as a celebration of her unique way of seeing the world as a double-edged sword that can incite both pain and laughter.

Goldberg’s aim is to overcome a tendency many Woolf scholars deplore. That is the public’s proclivity to focus on Woolf’s sad, serious side — including her final walk to the River Ouse — to the exclusion of her witty, humorous side, including her incredibly productive life.

Steven Daldry’s popular 2002 film The Hours helped reinvigorate interest in Woolf and her writing. But it also reinforced the view of Woolf as a tragic figure, one reason why some Woolf fans and scholars panned the film. However, the film won a multitude of awards, including Nicole Kidman’s Oscar for best actress, the Golden Globes award for best drama and the best adapted screenplay honor from the Writers Guild of America.

Since then, online interest in Woolf has grown. And while I have my doubts that Woolf’s charm and relevance need to be “yanked” into the 21st century, no one has launched a project that inserts Woolf into mainstream media and pop culture the way that The Hours did. As a result, the public impression of Woolf remains a serious one.

Goldberg agrees, and she hopes her project will change that.

“I believe Woolf has been absorbed into our culture as an overly dour, overly serious character. By pairing her work with items of today’s pop culture in this blog project, I hope we can help show the author and her work in a new light—one that celebrates her sense of humour AND her gravitas. And her relevance to the 21st Century,” she wrote in an e-mail.

Goldberg says Hearts Asunder will feature a series of blog posts that take ideas, characters, and/or themes from Woolf’s work and “smash them against items of contemporary pop culture, resulting in brief and unique bits of creative writing in a variety of styles. In short, it’s a VW culture-jam.”

Blog contributors include a Canadian Stratford Festival actor, a baseball historian, a music critic, the star of a viral video comedy team, a mommy blogger and others. Goldberg says the writers have an interesting mix of perspectives and various levels of familiarity with Woolf’s work.

“But they’re all excited and eager to learn more about VW’s work through this project—and really, that’s a main goal of the concept for me, too,” she wrote.

Hearts Asunder is live now, and the full version of the Tumblr blog will launch tomorrow. See the RSS feed at the top of the right sidebar for links to the site’s most recent posts.

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Bloomsbury BallerinaDid Lydia Lopokova serve as inspiration for the character of the Russian princess Sasha in Virginia Woolf’s Orlando?

That was the question that popped into my mind after reading a review in The Guardian of Judith Mackrell’s book, The Bloomsbury Ballerina, which tells the story of modernist ballerina Lydia Lopokova.

The Russian ballerina took London — and the Bloomsbury circle — by storm for the 11 months of her first tour there, beginning in September 1918.

But according to the Guardian article, her sudden flight from the ballet world to take up with a Russian lover in July of 1919 disappointed the Bloomsbury crowd. By the time she returned in 1921, they were no longer enamored of her.

The review says Woolf only once made “significant fictional use” of Lopokova — as the inspiration for Rezia in Mrs. Dalloway.

However, I see another. I am struck by the similarities between the single-minded ballerina Lydia Lopokova and the exciting Muscovite princess, Sasha of Orlando.

Both moved with great grace and energy — Lopokova on the stage and Sasha on the ice. Both were charismatic. Lopokova mesmerized her audiences, and Sasha enchanted Orlando. Both were unconventional, mysterious, adventurous, and well-traveleled. And both had a dangerous side.

Lopokova and Sasha both ran off to Russia after a brief stay in London. And each of them captured the heart of a quintessential Englishman. For Lopokova, it was John Maynard Keynes’s heart, which resulted in a long-lasting marriage. For Sasha, it was Orlando’s, which resulted in heartbreak for the young lord.

All of this just brushes the surface. Feel free to add some strokes of your own — on either side of the issue.

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Holon, IsraelOn March 12, women in Israel will embrace Virginia Woolf’s idea that they need a private space in which to flourish.

The 2008 International Women’s Festival in Holon, Israel, will feature Woolf’s A Room of One’s Own as its theme.

The festival’s theater, dance, music, art and literature offerings aren’t negative about men, says festival artistic director Rivi Feldmesser Yaron, according to the Jerusalem Post.

Instead, they “reveal the woman’s world and its inherent power,” he said. 

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