Orlando, subtitled 'A Biography', is one of Virginia Woolf's most experimental works, a jeu d'esprit that becomes increasingly serious as it leads us on a satirical, and intensely poetic, progress through three hundred years of English history. It ...
is a book about the nature of writing, which not only plays with literary forms but subverts the fixed categories of time and sexuality. Its hero, who suddenly becomes a heroine, eludes death to live from the reign of Elizabeth I to the end of the nineteen-twenties. While developing her hero-heroine against a richly coloured historical backdrop in which many of the great names of English letters play cameo role, Woolf explores various highly modern themes. The novel, first published in 1928, focuses particularly on the social and political position of women, on societal constructions of sexual identity, and the situation of the woman author. Based in part on the life and career of Vita Sackville-West, with whom Woolf was for a time in love, Orlando extends the boundaries of fiction and makes play with ideas of biographical authority. The novel presages techniques and interests developed in such later works as The Waves (1931) and Between the Acts (1941). Woolf's feminist treatise, A Room of One's Own, published the previous year, shares a number of the novel's concerns. This edition adopts as its copy-text the surviving proofs marked and revised by Woolf for the novel's American publication. Purged of printing errors, the copy-text is emended by Woolf's later revisions for the first English edition. The text is supplemented by an introduction setting the novel in its literary and biographical contexts, by explanatory notes offering much new information about its sources, and lists of emendations and textual variants.
I really enjoy the relationship between clothing and genders and the ridiculous but imaginary description of people lying on the ice sliding down the Thames. A reader may enjoy the book more after watching the great performance of Wei Hai-min.
I enjoyed reading some bits of this book, and very witty ones I must say, but for the most part I sourly regretted to have ever picked it up.
Woolf's self-possessed, delirious flow of nonsensical prose dominates the best part of the last sixty
Turning over the last pages I was so profoundly distressed that I did not even grudge for the lack of a proper ending(though some philosopher might differ as to the propriety of the ending); I just felt an incredible surge of blessed relief at the sudden realization of being done with it.
I look forward to the day when I might forget the pang which any forced, time-slashing activity as reading this book was.Continua...Nascondi
(…) she felt that however much landing there meant comfort, meant opulence, meant consequence and state (for his consort, over half Yorkshire), still, if it meant conventionality, meant slavery, meant deceit, meant denying her love, fettering her
... limbs, pursing her lips and restraining her tongue, then she would turn about with the ship and set sail once more for the gypsies.Continua...Nascondi
All I can do, once I set foot on English soil, is to pour tea and ask my lords how they like it. D’you take sugar? D’you take cream? And mincing out the words, she was horrified to perceive how low an opinion she was forming of the other sex,
... the manly, to which it had once been here pride to belong. “To fall from a masthead, “ she thought, “ because you see a woman’s ankle; to dress up like a Guy Fawkes and parade the streets, so that women may praise you; to deny a woman teaching lest she may laugh at you; to be slave of the frailest chit in petticoats and yet go about as if you were the Lords of creation – Heavens!” she thought,” what fools they make of us – what fools we are!” And here it would seem from some ambiguity in here terms that she was censuring both sexes equally, as if she belonged to neither; and indeed, for the time being, she seemed to vacillate; she was a man; she was a woman; she knew the secrets, shared the weaknesses of each. It was a most bewildering and whirligig state of mind to be in. The comforts of ignorance seemed utterly denied her. Continua...Nascondi
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4 anni faOrlando on the boat on her way from Turkey to England