John Mepham’s Criticism in Focus: Virginia Woolf (NY: St Martin’s Press, 1992)

Table of Contents

1. LIFE AND CAREER
Biographical Studies – Psycho-literary Speculations – Critical Reception to 1965 – Bibliographies and Reference Works

2. VIRGINIA WOOLF AND HER CONTEXT
‘The Real World’ – Marxist Views – Woolf and Psychoanalysis – The Bloomsbury Group – Bloomsbury Aesthetics

3. VIRGINIA WOOLF AND MODERNISM
Modernist Culture – Modernist Forms

4. FEMINIST STUDIES
A Passionate Audience – Woolf’s Feminist Theory – Poststructuralist Perspectives – Gender and Woolf’s Novels – Women’s Literary Traditions

5. PHILOSOPHICAL INTERPRETATIONS
The Existential Project* – The Creative Consciousness – Time, Repetition, Deconstruction

6. PRACTICAL AND THEMATIC CRITICISM
Practical Criticism – Technical and Formal Analysis – Themes and Theses

7. EDITIONS, DRAFTS AND AGENDAS
The Early Novels – Modernist Novels – The 1930s – Other Writings

• BIBLIOGRAPHY
• INDEX

*’Philosophers have wanted us to believe that there is some more profound narrative, or stratum of being, beneath the layers of personality and emotion, relationship and social life.’ (p. 87)
Cf. Leonard Woolf:
‘I am concerned [here] solely with the question: what are [the novels] about? The moment one asks that question, the judgment of the hostile critics seems extraordinary. It seems to me impossible to read To the Lighthouse and not see that, beneath the surface of events and the kaleidoscope of thoughts and dialogue, the subject of the book, the pivot of the novel, is the most important and complex relations of human beings and the most profound problems of human existence…’ (Foreword to Mitchell A. Leaska’s Virginia Woolf’s Lighthouse: A Study in Critical Method, Hogarth Press, 1970, pp.10-11)

copyright© S. N.Clarke & VWSGB 2000