Monday, September 13, 2010

Critical Ariticle Analysis

Woolf’s Angel and the Demon Reader
Oren Goldschmidt

This article focuses on the roles of women in Virginia Woolf writing, more specifically how she negotiates complex and evolving aspects of femininity. She's is dealing with the 19th century Victorian attitude of oppression of the woman. Yet she doesn't want to rid herself of these vestiges entirely, she calls these values "an inheritance that can be useful to modernity in many ways." (215) It must have been a struggle because the Victorian woman seems to be of no substance by herself, she is judged by her relationships. Her relationship with her husband and thus with the home and domestic duty. Her existence is also based on her social connections.

In the portrayal of women, Woolf was forced to walk the line between breaking the norms and confirming them.The author claims that Woolf repeatedly uses a "hostess" character to simultaneously display these roles and to "reclaim feminine creative power." 216 This dualism in the works of Virginia's Woolf is the main idea of the text. I don't think I've read enough criticism to know what critical crux this article fits into, I would imagine there's a large body of work about women in Woolf's work and how she translates her past with repressive Victorian values.

This article was written on June 9, 2010, so it is very recent. While the article provides fascinating insight on the complex language used to portray femininity it does not claim to invent anything new. The text doesn't focus on any text in particular, but it does shed light on the challenges Woolf dealt with while trying to make her way to modernity. It is partially a response to a book written about Woolf and domesticity. While this article was interesting, I would not say it is necessary.

Goldschmidt, Oren. "Woolf's Angel and the Demon Reader." Women 21.2 (2010): 214-216. Academic Search Premier. EBSCO. Web. 14 Sept. 2010.

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