Posts Tagged ‘Virginia Woolf’

One hundred years ago today, on Dec 3, 1923, Virginia Woolf began a long diary entry about her brother Adrian’s separation from his wife Karin with a rumination on writing vs. reading:

Back from Rodmell; unable to settle in; therefore I write diary. How often I have said this! An odd psychological fact–that I can write when I’m too jangled to read. Morever, I want to leave as few pages blank as possibe; & the end of the year is only some three weeks off. – Diary 2, p. 276.


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Virginia Woolf Society Turkey is hosting another Woolf seminar featuring Delia Ungurenau on “The Surreal Real: Proust, Woolf, and World Cinema” on Dec. 8.

What: A free online talk on “The Surreal Real: Proust, Woolf, and World Cinema,” as part of the Woolf Seminars series of the Virginia Woolf Society Turkey.
Who: Delia Ungurenau is associate director of Harvard’s Institute for World Literature and associate professor of literary theory in the Department of Literary Studies at the University of Bucharest. She is the author of From Paris to Tlôn: Surrealism as World Literature and The Poetics of Apocalypse: The Cultural War in Romanian Literary Magazines, 1944-1947
When: Friday, Dec. 8, 6-8 pm. 6-8 p.m. Turkey time (10 a.m. – noon EST). Please check your local time.
Cost: Free
Registration: Registration is free at Eventbrite.

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Virginia Woolf wrote hundreds of essays during her lifetime. The total varies from “nearly 600” (Fernald 160) to “640,” (Rigel Daughtery 9) so it can be difficult to locate just the right essay when needed. For that reason,  sometimes a slim collection of Virginia Woolf essays that focus on a specific topic is just the thing.

Here are two.

On freedom

The first is part of a 27-volume Vintage Mini collection, a Vintage Classic published by Penguin/Random House. Titled Liberty, it includes selections from A Room of One’s Own (1929), The Waves (1931), and the essays “Street Haunting” and “How Should One Read a Book.”

Here begins the freedom of the mind, or rather the possibility that in the course of time the mind will be free to write what it likes – jacket quote from Liberty (2018)

On the visual arts

The second is the twentieth volume in the ekphrasis series published by David Zwirner Books in 2021 and is a collection of Woolf’s writings on the visual arts.

Titled Oh, to Be a Painter!, the volume begins with an introduction by Claudia Tobin and includes Woolf’s longest essay on painting, “Walter Sickert: A Conversation” (1934), alongside shorter essays and reviews, including “Pictures and Portraits” (1920) and “Pictures” (1925).


Fernald, Anne E. “A Feminist Public Sphere? Virginia Woolf’s Revisions of the Eighteenth Century.” Feminist Studies 31:1 (2005): 158-182.

Daugherty, Beth Rigel. “The Transatlantic Virginia Woolf: Essaying an American Audience.” Virginia Woolf Miscellany 76 (2009): 9-11.


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Virginia Woolf Society Turkey is holding another online seminar, and this one covers Virginia Woolf and fashion.

What: A free online talk: “‘She had a flair for beautiful, if individual dresses’: Virginia Woolf’s Style Itineraries,” as part of the Woolf Seminars series of the Virginia Woolf Society Turkey.

When: Oct. 20 at 7 p.m. (Turkey time) or noon-2:30 p.m. EST. Check times for your location.

Who: Antoine Perret, a PhD candidate in English literature at Université Sorbonne Nouvelle, Paris, will be the speaker.

Cost: Free

Registration: Open to all via the Eventbrite link.

About the talk

This talk will explore the intriguing paradoxes surrounding Virginia Woolf’s sartorial style. Deemed highly unfashionable by her contemporaries, she now stands as a style icon, inspiring designers and gracing the pages of fashion magazines. Woolf’s personal relationship with clothes was in itself contradictory, always oscillating between love and hate.

Perret arguesthat Woolf’s shabby looks and ostensible disinterest in dress can be seen as a posture that not only helped crafting her bohemian public persona, but also took part in her subsequent celebration on the fashion scene. Drawing from her fiction, he will eventually explore how Woolf’s distinctive style and fascination with dress also influenced her literary use of clothes.

About the speaker

Antoine Perret is a PhD candidate in English literature at Universite Sorbonne Nouvelle, Paris. Supervised by Professor Catherine Lanone and Dr. Floriane Reviron-Pi?gay, he is currently writing a doctoral thesis on fashion, style, and modernism, focusing particularly on the works of E.M. Forster, Virginia Woolf, and Jean Rhys. Arguing for a material approach to literary modernism, his research addresses the role of clothing within the diegesis, while also exploring the concept of fashion taken as a social phenomenon, in particular its influence on the literary community and on aesthetic practices, so as to interrogate the modalities of modernism and its reception.

About last month’s talk

Last month, Virginia Woolf Society Turkey hosted a free online talk on “Unwriting and Rewriting History and Literary History: Woolf’s Fictions and Essays,” as part of the Woolf Seminars series.

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Register to attend the three-day follow-up to the 32nd Annual International Conference on Virginia Woolf: Virginia Woolf and Ecologies II, set for Oct. 20-22 on Zoom.

The event, sponsored by the International Virginia Woolf Society, includes 12 panel sessions and a keynote by Derek Ryan of the University of Kent and continues the theme of the 2023 conference: “Virginia Woolf and Ecologies.” Ryan’s keynote is titled “Virginia Woolf and the Pyrocene: Fire Ecologies.”

Dates and times

The conference begins at 11:30 a.m. EDT Oct. 20 and ends at 4 p.m. EDT Oct. 22. Please remember to check local times.

What it costs

Registration costs $20, plus a small transaction fee, with proceeds going towards the Suzanne Bellamy Travel Fund, which supports travel to the Annual Conference on Virginia Woolf next June.

How to register

Register via Eventbrite. You will find an outline of the symposium schedule on the registration page, where the full program schedule will be made available soon.

You should receive a confirmation message upon registering, and you will be added to an email list to which organizers will send the requisite Zoom links as the dates of the symposium draw near.

Get more information

If you have any questions about registration or other IVWS business, write to  vwoolfsociety@gmail.com. Direct other questions about the symposium program to woolfecologies@gmail.com.

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