Monday, January 20, 2020

Elizabeth Barrett-Browning and Virginia Woolf Essay -- Biography Biogr

Elizabeth Barrett-Browning and Virginia Woolf      Ã‚  Ã‚   I chose to compare and contrast two women authors from different literary time periods.   Elizabeth Barrett Browning (1806-1861) as a representative of the Victorian age (1832-1901) and Virginia Woolf (1882-1941) as the spokeswoman for the Modernist (1914-1939) mindset.   Being women in historical time periods that did not embrace the talents and gifts of women; they share many of the same issues and themes throughout their works - however, it is the age in which they wrote that shaped their expressions of these themes.   Although they lived only decades apart their worlds were remarkably different - their voices were muted or amplified according to the beat of society's drum.   Passages from Elizabeth Barrett Browning's Aurora Leigh can be contrasted with Virginia Woolf's portrayal of Isabella in The Lady in the Looking Glass: A Reflection.    The Victorian Era is known as the Age of Inquiry when all the foundational truths of the past were open to examination and reconsideration.   Despite this new desire for certainty, Victorians were slow to release the safety of the past - trying rather to meld the old and the new together and struggling with the mismatched pieces.   Modernists, on the other hand, rebelled openly and loudly against their past which resulted in an extreme sense of loss and instability - reflected in the works of the time.   Elizabeth Barrett Browning writes as one who is looking through a rain drenched window at a scene that is vaguely familiar but quite unclear.   She is attempting to remove the distortion to see what the vista holds.   Rather than direct analysis, Victorian authors often tried to offer a form of practical advice f... ...ted forth..." but, "Isabella did not wish to be known".   Not because she knew herself to be a fraud but because she was inexplicably complicated and the embodiment of contradiction - a truly modern woman.    Both of these women were intuitive authors who had deep messages to convey through their works.   Elizabeth was able to probe the perimeter of difficult issues while maintaining one foot on the firm ground of her upbringing and faith.   Virginia abandoned all to forge into the complexities of Modern thought and despite her bravery she was herself a victim of the despair that comes with a loss of moorings.    Longman citations   refer to page numbers of Eng 103 course text, Spring 2001: Damrosch, David, et al., ed.   The Longman Anthology of British Literature:   Ã‚  Ã‚   Vol. B.   Compact ed.   New York: Longman - Addison Wesley Longman, 2000.

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