Woolf, Virginia – “Mrs Dalloway”
"Mrs Dalloway" is the most famous novel by British author Virginia Woolf, and is considered her masterpiece.
It follows the unity of Aristotelian time and place being set in London on a Wednesday of June 1923 but is one of the most representative novels of modernism and the so-called "stream of consciousness".
The novel has a simple plot but is characterized by different levels of reading.
The novel, in fact, can be considered as:
- an autobiographical novel: Clarissa's beloved seaside home in Bourton is Virginia's beloved seaside home in Cornwall, and Septimus's evil living is Virginia's evil living.
- a philosophical-existential novel: Mrs. Dalloway is a novel about the ambiguity of space and time, it is a reflection on the unreality of the real that, in its restlessness, overwhelms man in the storm of phenomena and drowns him in the frenetic waves of joy and of suffering.
- an historical-social novel: Virginia Woolf demolishes piece by piece the British society of the first post-war period, a waste land crossed by hypocrisy and cruelty.
- a stylistic novel: the author gives life to an opera, melancholic to read with the lenses of emotion and feeling, not of rationality. The flow of consciousness becomes the catalyst pole of a kaleidoscope of lives, intertwined with thin, imperceptible threads like the spirals of an airplane or the running of a child in Regent's Park.
Moreover, the rhythm of this novel, pleasantly punctuated by the tolling of Big Ben, is tight and does not allow distractions, through its characters it seems that the author reveals her thoughts and her thoughts in the very moment in which she generates them.