The Nightmare of History

The Fictions of Virginia Woolf and D.H. Lawrence
Helen Wussow
Lehigh University Press - The Nightmare of History
The Nightmare of History The Fictions of Virginia Woolf and D. H. Lawrence is an important attempt to show the influence of the First World War on the literary and cultural attitudes of these two seminal, yet very different, writers. It demonstrates that Wolf and Lawrence shared many perspectives about the dislocations and horrors created by war, as well as potential, although probably unachievable, cultural resurrection.
 
Helen Wussow reveals that the authors' uses of language, their shaping of verbal forms applied simultaneously to issues of personal relationship and public or cultural history, show remarkable similarities. She argues that the works of these two authors are informed by the dynamics of conflict. Yet, at the same time, Wussow is always aware of significant differences between Lawrence's and Woolf's fictions. She argues that the works of these two authors are informed by the dynamics of conflict. Relying on the letters of both, diaries, and subtle and original readings of the fictions, Wussow thoroughly and convincingly argues that Woolf and Lawrence share ways of seeing. The framework that takes these two contemporaries (so often placed in different worlds) and brings them together to show what's central in the culture, while, at the same time, paying due attention to the creative individuality of each, is genuinely original and will determine how we read these authors in the future.
 
Wussow examines to what extent the Great War affected the two authors' views of social and historical events, as well as suggesting that violence and the structure of battle is evident in their prewar writings. Both writers perceived an inherent struggle between the self and the other; this contest extends to the individual as well as the nation. The strife that Woolf and Lawrence regard as essential to human interaction is expressed through aggressive linguistic acts and domestic violence, and is not limited to the deadly encounters on the battlefields of Europe.
ISBN: 
9780934223461 (R&L)
0934223467 (AUP)
Price: 
$70.00
Year: 
1998
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