Virginia Woolf and the Nineteenth-Century Domestic Novel
In Virginia Woolf and the Nineteenth-Century Domestic Novel, Emily Blair explores how nineteenth-century descriptions of femininity saturate both Woolf s fiction and her modernist manifestos. Moving between the Victorian and modernist periods, Blair looks at a range of nineteenth- and early twentieth-century sources, including the literature of conduct and household management, as well as autobiography, essay, poetry, and fiction. She argues for a reevaluation of Woolf s persistent yet vexed fascination with English domesticity and female creativity by juxtaposing the novels of Elizabeth Gaskell and Margaret Oliphant, two popular Victorian novelists, against Woolf s own novels and essays. Blair then traces unacknowledged lines of influence and complex interpretations that Woolf attempted to disavow. While reconsidering Woolf s analysis of women and fiction, Blair simultaneously deepens our appreciation of Woolf s work and advances our understanding of feminine aesthetics.
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aesthetic ambivalence Angel Anne Thackeray Ritchie Aphra Behn AROO artist becomes Beeton behavior Behn’s biographer career Carlingford character characterization Charlotte Bronte Clarissa Clarissa’s party create critical critique Cynthia Dalloway decoration descriptions of femininity desire detail discourse discussion domestic artistry domestic space drawing room Eliot Elizabeth Gaskell Ellis Ellis’s emotions essay etiquette father’s feelings female figure focus Gaskell’s George Eliot Gibson green Hamley hostess ideal influence Jeanie Johnson’s Lady Bruton Leslie Stephen Lighthouse Lily literary lives Lucilla’s male Margaret Oliphant material metaphor Miss Marjoribanks models Modern Fiction modernist Molly Molly’s mother narrative narrator nineteenth-century descriptions novel novelist Oliphant’s Peter’s plot Ramsay Ramsay’s reader reading relationship repression Ritchie Ritchie’s Roger Roger Fry role Room of One’s Rose Rose’s Ruskin’s sexual social society sphere spiritual Stephen suggests things Three Guineas tion Victorian Virginia Woolf Wives and Daughters woman writer women Woolf argues writing