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 Marco Caracciolo

 The Curse of Realism
 Karin Kukkonen

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 Jonas Grethlein

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 Maria Mäkelä

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Updated Up To 26/06/2018
Volume 2, Number 1 (January 2004) : 147-75
“Locked in a Room of One’s Own?”
Querying the Quest for Keys to Woolf’s “Madness”
Janice Stewart
Rubric A: Literature and Ideology

Abstract

 

The article is a historiographical against-the-grain reading of archetypal constructions of Virginia Woolf’s “madness.” A genealogical tracing of Woolf’s own testimonials concerning her mental life is juxtaposed with the interpretive analytic specularization of her primary biographers. This new lens exposes the normative reading practices that have produced, simultaneously, both the problematic of Woolf’s “madness” and a near elision of any traces of the conditions of its own production. Woolf’s writing about her “contrary instincts” is examined without searching for underlying pathology; the latter would have amounted to reinscribing Woolf in the institualization of “mental illness.”


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