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Posts Tagged ‘A Room of One’s Own’

Marking the 80th anniversary of Virginia Woolf’s death, the London Library will present an online dramatization of Virginia Woolf’s iconic 1928 feminist polemic, A Room of One’s Own, on Saturday, May 1, 8-9 p.m. BST.

The dramatization is adapted by Linda Marshall-Griffiths, directed by Charlotte Westenra, and filmed in The London Library.

Tickets are £10 and are available from the London Library website.

The event is part of the three-day online London Library Lit Fest, Saturday, May 1, to Monday, May 3. Festival Passes are available that include one ticket to all 14 main events, at a cost of £25.

Ticket holders are able to watch the online events live or any time up until June 13. They will be sent a link 24 hours before the event.

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International Women’s Day is Monday, March 8, and the Virginia Woolf Society of Great Britain has put out a call that draws attention to the current plight of working women and connects it to Virginia Woolf’s feminist polemic A Room of One’s Own (1929).

With women’s employment taking a huge hit due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the VWSGB is asking us to share a photograph of a room of our own — if we are lucky enough to have one.

Women, work, and the pandemic

The pandemic has affected women’s work lives in drastic ways. The BBC is calling it a “shecession” and cites these facts:

  • Globally, women’s job losses due to Covid-19 are 1.8 times greater than men’s.
  • In the U.S., unemployment has intensified the most for those employed in personal care and food service jobs, where women predominate.
  • One in four women surveyed said they were thinking about reducing or leaving paid work due to the pandemic.
  • Those disproportionately affected in the U.S. include black women and Latinas.
  • Some subgroups are squeezed even more, like mothers of young children and mothers without partners or relatives.

In addition, recent projections estimate that employment for women may not recover to pre-pandemic levels until 2024—two full years after a recovery for men, according to Fortune.

The pertinence of A Room of One’s Own

So the British society has turned its attention to Virginia Woolf’s eternally pertinent feminist manifesto, A Room of One’s Own, a text the society writes, Now more than ever . . . is acutely relevant given that women’s work is being so squeezed and undervalued, and space is at a premium in family homes and elsewhere during life under lockdown, with working and schooling taking place in the home.”

Share your room of your own or your thoughts about the essay

So here’s the charge: Share photos of your own Room of One’s Own, if you are lucky enough to have one, or your reflections on Woolf’s essay A Room of One’s Own and what it means to you. The society will share contributions on its social media pages.

Email your contribution to marielleoneill88@hotmail.com

And on March 8, check the VWSGB social media accounts:

Facebook: www.facebook.com/VWSGB
Instagram: @virginiawoolfsociety
Twitter: @VirginiaWoolfGB

 

A woman must have money and a room of her own if she is to write fiction. – Virginia Woolf, A Room of One’s Own

 

Virginia Woolf’s desk in her writing lodge at Monk’s House, 2019

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If you have ever wanted to study all of Virginia Woolf’s major works in consecutive order, now is your chance — no matter where you live.

Literature Cambridge has planned a “Virginia Woolf Season” that will run from Oct. 24 of this year through June 5, 2021 — and each of 18 study sessions will be available online via Zoom.

This unique eight-month season of Woolf study will cover her 12 major books in order of publication, from The Voyage Out (1915) to Between the Acts (1941). Each session includes a live, newly commissioned online lecture and seminar via Zoom. A few topics are repeated to accommodate different schedules.

Tickets per session

£26 full price
£22 students and CAMcard holders
Book them online.

Schedule of all-new lectures from leading scholars

  1. Saturday, 24 October 2020, 6 p.m. The Voyage Out (1915), with Alison Hennegan

    Karina Jacubowicz

  2. Saturday, 21 November 2020, 6 p.m. Night and Day (1919), with Ellie Mitchell
  3. Saturday, 12 December 2020, 10 a.m. Jacob’s Room (1922), with Alison Hennegan
  4. Saturday, 9 January 2021, 6 p.m. Mrs. Dalloway (1925) 1: Women in Mrs. Dalloway, with Trudi Tate
  5. Sunday, 10 January 2021, 10 a.m. Mrs. Dalloway (1925) 1: Women in Mrs. Dalloway, with Trudi Tate
  6. Saturday, 30 January 2021, 6 p.m. Mrs. Dalloway (1925) 2: Dressing Mrs. Dalloway, with Claire Nicholson
  7. Saturday, 13 February 2021, 6 p.m. To the Lighthouse (1927) 1: Art, with Claudia Tobin
  8. Sunday, 14 February 2021, 10 a.m. To the Lighthouse (1927) 2: Gardens, with Trudi Tate
  9. Sunday, 21 February 2021, 6 p.m. To the Lighthouse (1927) 2: Gardens, with Trudi Tate
  10. Saturday, 27 February 2021, 6 p.m. Orlando (1928): Writing Vita, Writing Life, with Karina Jakubowicz
  11. Saturday, 6 March 2021, 6 p.m. A Room of One’s Own (1929) 1: Androgyny, with Alison Hennegan
  12. Sunday, 14 March 2021, 10 a.m. A Room of One’s Own (1929) 2: Women
  13. Saturday, 3 April 2021, 6 p.m. The Waves (1931) 1: with Ellie Mitchell
  14. Sunday, 4 April 2021, 10 a.m. The Waves (1931) 2: Friendship with Trudi Tate
  15. Saturday, 10 April 2021 6 p.m. Flush: A Biography (1933), with Alison Hennegan
  16. Sunday, 2 May 2021, 6 p.m. The Years (1937), with Anna Snaith
  17. Saturday, 8 May 2021, 6 p.m. Three Guineas (1938) and Music, with Claire Davison
  18. Saturday, 5 June 2021, 10 a.m. Between the Acts (1941): Dispersed are We, with Karina Jakubowicz

Trudi Tate (center) welcomes students to the Virginia Woolf’s Gardens course at Wolfson College at the University of Cambridge in July 2019.

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A beautifully crafted staff-student book that is part of a collaborative project at the University of Reading is now available.

A Room of Our Own: The Virginia Woolf Learning Journals presents witty, inventive, and deeply felt learning journal entries from more than 20 final year students in the Department of English Literature at the University of Reading. Appropriately enough, the university was the site of the 27th Annual International Conference on Virginia Woolf: Virginia Woolf and the World of Books,

Content of the book

The entries are 500-word pieces of critical and creative writing responding to Woolf’s novels and essays.

The 64 contributions are organized into 10 chapters. The texts discussed in the collection are The Voyage Out, Jacob’s Room, Mrs. Dalloway, A Room of One’s Own, Three Guineas, ‘Street Haunting’, ‘Modern Novels’, ‘Mr. Bennett and Mrs. Brown’, ‘Professions for Women’ and ‘Memories of a Working Women’s Guild’.

Madeleine Davies’ introduction to the book explains the genesis of the project and its links to diversifying assessment practice, student engagement, and the ability of graduates to find employment.

Look of the book

Designer Katy Smith studied Woolf’s handwritten letters so she could create a hand drawn typeface in a similar style in a shade of purple, Woolf’s ink preference for her own writing. She also designed special icons representative of each chapter.

Smith worked with Davies and three student editors from the English Literature Department — Libby Bushill, Zoë Kyle and Maddie Bazin — on the project.

An award winner

The project has won two University of Reading collaborative excellence awards, has been the basis of a Times Higher Education shortlisting (2019) for Most Innovative Teaching, and is the university’s nomination for this year’s HE Advanced CATE Award.

Get a copy

A Room of One’s Own is available as an e-book and as a paperback. You can follow the project on Twitter at @RoomofOurOwnUOR.

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“Shakespeare’s Sisters” is an essay in Rachel Cusk’s 2019 collection, Coventry (and the first one I turned to, for obvious reasons). She begins by asking, “Can we, in the twenty-first century, identify something that could be called ‘women’s writing’?”

In that context she discusses The Second Sex by Simone de Beauvoir and Virginia Woolf’s A Room of One’s Own. “Between them,” she says, “they shaped the discourse of twentieth-century women’s writing,”

War vs. feelings

Eighty years later, as Cusk sees it, “a book about war is still judged more important than a book about ‘the feelings of women.’ Most significantly, when a woman writes a book about war she is lauded: she has eschewed the vast unlit chamber and the serpentine caves; there is the sense that she has made proper use of her room and her money, her new rights of property.

The woman writer who confines herself to her female ‘reality’ is by the same token often criticized. She appears to have squandered her room, her money.”

Just another women’s novel

Men have always written about the female experience–Madame Bovary and Anna Karenina come immediately to mind, as well as a number of novels by contemporary authors. I’ve seen some of these works praised to the skies, touted as the latest incarnation of the great American novel. Yet, still, too frequently, the women creating these novels are dismissed as writing just another woman’s novel.

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