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Archive for January, 2018

Literary Hub has posted a brief visual history of covers of Virginia Woolf novels, and it is definitely worth a look. It was the site’s happy 136th birthday message last week. I had fun identifying the versions I own from 1919 to the present.

Header photo on the Literary Hub post.

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Virginia Woolf’s 136th birthday was a big one. Google Doodle led the way by using its daily doodle to pay homage to her on her special day. The drawing lit a Woolfian wildfire of birthday candles that spread across the globe, with media big and small sharing the news, along with social media users.

Google Doodle in commemoration of Woolf’s 136th birthday

Links to media coverage of the Google Doodle birthday tribute to Woolf

Other birthday tributes

  • At The Guardian, author Kait Welsh suggested that we celebrate Woolf rather than Burns on Burns Day, as they share the same birthday.

    Virginia Woolf taking tea, photograph by Lady Ottoline Morrell, June 1923

  • At The Weekly Standard, Chris Deaton admired Woolf’s extraordinary writing in To the Lighthouse.
  • At The Independent, Joe Sommerlad discussed what makes Woolf famous.
  • At Quartz, Thu-Huong-Ha extolled the lessons Woolf teaches about how to be a thinking woman.
  • Marie Clare shared nine important feminist Woolf quotes from A Room of One’s Own.
  • Mental Floss shared some, too.
  • At the Deccan Herald, readers were challenged with a Woolf quiz.
  • On Facebook, the Great British Tea Party posted an image of Woolf taking tea with Ottoline Morrell.
  • Goodreads shared the Google Doodle on its Facebook page.
  • Amy Poehler’s Smart Girls Facebook page posted a tribute, along with many others.

Google Doodle artist tweeted her thoughts

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And Twitter blew up with birthday greetings, including a special one from National Trust Books that featured Monk’s House and another from the National Museum of Women in the Arts that showed Judy Chicago’s preparatory drawings for her Woolf plate in The Dinner Party.

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Today would have been Virginia Woolf’s 136th birthday, and Google has taken note by creating a Google Doodle in her honor and sharing the evolution of the doodle, along with a map of its global reach.

There’s a YouTube video, too. But be forewarned. The audio track is an annoying electronic voice.

Woolf celebrated in the media

No surprise that the Google Doodle got some good press — from CNET to The Sun to media worldwide — and that the story blew up on Twitter.

Knowing how relevant and immediate Woolf’s writing is, it’s also no surprise that Vox writer Constance Grady connected Woolf to the #MeToo movement. She wrote a piece on the unsettling nature of Woolf’s polemical writing today.

The Independent posted an article about how Woolf, as a pioneering female novelist, revolutionized fiction.

Book launch in Woolf’s honor

Woolf’s accomplishments as a prolific letter writer were noted as well by the launch of the Frances Spalding book The Illustrated Letters of Virginia Woolf. Yesterday Spalding gave a talk about the book and Woolf’s letters at Waterstones on Gower Street in London as part of the launch.

Twitter explosion lauds Woolf

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Birthday wishes from the past on Blogging Woolf

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One of Blogging Woolf’s bookshelves

Editor’s Note: Deadline extended to Sept. 30, 2018.

Catherine Hollis, editor of an upcoming themed issue of the Virginia Woolf Miscellany on “Collecting Woolf” has put out a call for papers. She is hoping to gather both traditional scholarly articles on collecting Virginia Woolf and Hogarth Press books, as well as shorter pieces about our own collections.

Questions that could be addressed include the following:

  • Who collects Virginia Woolf and Hogarth Press books?
  • When did the demand for and economic value of Woolfs’ and the Hogarth Press’s books begin in the antiquarian book trade?
  • Are Woolf and Hogarth Press books more or less desirable than other modernist first editions?
  • What are the emotional, haptic, and educational values of early Woolf and Hogarth Press editions for scholars, students, and common readers?
  • What do the book collections of Virginia and Leonard Woolf tell us about their lives as readers and writers?

In addition to more formal academic essays, this issue of the Miscellany, in collaboration with Blogging Woolf, will also feature a special section called “Our Bookshelves, Ourselves.” Our book collections tell stories about our reading lives and also about our lives in the larger community of Woolf’s readers and scholars. In fact, a history of our bookshelves might begin to tell a history of the International Virginia Woolf Society itself.

If you are a “common book collector,” and your books tell a story about your immersion in Woolf or Hogarth Press studies, tell us about it. If you have interesting strategies or stories about acquiring collectible editions of Woolf and Hogarth Press books on a budget, let us know!

Send submissions of 2,000 words for longer essays and 500 words for “Our Bookshelves” by Sept. 1, 2018, to Catherine Hollis via hollisc@berkeley.edu

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Virginia Woolf Talks by leading scholars on Virginia Woolf and her contemporaries are held at Lucy Cavendish College and are free and open to all.
Lent Term 2018

Tuesday 23 January 2018, 1.00 pm
David Trotter
‘Giving the Sign’: Katherine Mansfield’s stories

Tuesday 6 March 2018, 1.00 pm
Aoife Byrne
Elizabeth Bowen’s writings on the Second World War

Venue: Lucy Cavendish College, Lady Margaret Road, Cambridge CB3 0BU
You can read about previous talks on the Literature Cambridge Blog page. 

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Due to the high level of interest in the inaugural issue of Feminist Modernist Studies (1:1-2), Routledge has provided free access to the entire first issue for the month of January, according to Editor Cassandra Laity of the University of Tennessee.

Short essays in the volume examine the state of and future of feminist modernist studies in global women writers, “intermodernism,” African-American and queer studies.

Longer essays explore transgender and Vita Sackville West; refugees in Olive Moore; feminist modernism in the worlds of fashion, WWII union organizing, psychoanalysis, sculpture, dance, Afro-Caribbean crossings, and much more.

Get full free access.

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From the VWoolf Listserv comes this call for papers.

Virginia Woolf’s atheism and her sharp criticism of religion are well-established in the critical literature. Yet Woolf’s sometimes withering critique of religion belies what might be termed a spiritual sensibility in her work. An upcoming collection seeks to define the spiritual in expansive and interdisciplinary ways that illuminate Woolf’s writing, as well as spirituality itself.

The call for papers for this collections seeks papers on the following:

  • Approaches drawing on theology, psychology, philosophy, geography, and other disciplinary methods
  • Areas of interest might include Woolf’s treatment of sacred spaces; doctrinal or ritualistic language; the soul; illness and its relationship to spiritual experience; spiritual metaphors; spirituality and the body; re-enchantment; writing as spiritual practice; etc.

Submit abstracts of approximately 500 words by March 1, 2018, to Kristina K. Groover, Professor of English, Appalachian State University, at grooverkk@appstate.edu <mailto:grooverkk@appstate.edu>).

Inquiries are welcome.

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