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Beth Rigel Daugherty is beloved in Virginia Woolf circles for both her scholarship and her down-to-earth approach to Woolf studies. Her latest book, Virginia Woolf’s Apprenticeship: Becoming an Essayist, out his month, is available at a 30 percent discount from the Edinburgh University Press. Just enter the code EVENT30 when you checkout and you can share her brilliance at a discount.

What’s in the book

  • The most comprehensive portrayal of Virginia Woolf’s education to date
  • Examination of the link between Virginia Stephen’s education and Virginia Woolf’s essays
  • A focus on Woolf’s nonfiction and her early work
  • Two holograph draft lectures by Virginia Stephen for the first time
  • A compilation and organization of archival material in appendices for future researchers.

According to the publisher:

This study takes up Woolf’s challenge to probe the relationship between education and work, specifically her education and her work as an essayist. It expands her education beyond her father’s library to include not only a broader examination of her homeschooling but also her teaching at Morley College and her early book reviewing. It places Virginia Stephen’s learning in the historical and cultural contexts of education for women, the working classes and writers in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century.

About Beth Rigel Daugherty

Beth Rigel Daugherty (at far left), Leslie Hankins and Diane Gillespie presented a panel on “Portraying and Projecting Age, Ageism, and Activism” at the 19th Annual International Conference on Virginia Woolf, with its theme of social justice, at the University of Mount Saint Joseph in Cincinnati in June of 2019.

Recently retired from Ohio’s Otterbein University, Beth Rigel Daugherty taught modernist English literature, Virginia Woolf and Appalachian and Native American literature along with many thematically focused writing courses, for 36 years.

Her plenary talk at the 31st Annual International Conference on Virginia Woolf, “On the Ethics of Teaching: Virginia Woolf’s Essays,” received accolades from everyone who heard it.

Beth fell in love with Virginia Woolf and her essays while at Rice University and has been presenting and publishing on both ever since. Her peer-reviewed articles have appeared in edited collections; editions of the “How Should Read a Book?” holograph draft and Woolf’s fan letters in Woolf Studies Annual; and, with Mary Beth Pringle, the Modern Language Association teaching volume on To the Lighthouse.

A review

Drawing on deep research into the social history of women’s lives and of education, Daugherty shows with superb attention to detail how Virginia Stephen’s early experiences of teaching and of being taught nourished the seeds that flowered as Virginia Woolf, “an essayist compelled to teach.” This is impeccable and important scholarship.

– Mark Hussey, Distinguished Professor Emeritus, Pace University


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