The Women's Anxiety Towards their Authorship - Virginia Woolf's "A Room of One's Own" and "Professions of Women"

Essay by sLvRk155es April 2006

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In the "Infection in the Sentence", the author states, "locked into structures created by and for men, eighteenth- and nineteenth-century women writers did not so much rebel against the prevailing aesthetic as feel guilty about their inability to conform to it" (pg. 75). The women during these times were oppressed by male domination. They were expected to be reserved, obedient and well-mannered, hence which resulted in women's anxiety towards authorship. Virginia Woolf frequently used the theme of gender inequality in her writings. This can particularly be seen in her work, "A Room of One's Own" and "Professions for Women".

In Woolf's "A Room of One's Own", she depicts the struggle of women in the English society. She states that because these women are oppressed by male domination, hence the work that they produce is seen to be unimpressive that male writer's. Woolf invents Judith, an imaginary sister of William Shakespeare. She uses this identity of Judith in order to portray the difference in treatment of male and female writers during this time.

Judith was as talented as her brother, "she was as adventurous, as imaginative, as agog to see the world as he was. But she was not sent to school. She had no chance of learning grammar and logic, let alone of reading Horace and Virgil" (pg. 1342). Her talent which was equal as her brother's is ignored and discouraged by her family as well as from society. Although she was loved she was seen as just a woman,

She picked up a book now and then, one of her brother's perhaps, and read a few pages. But then her parents came in and told her to mend the stockings or mind the stew and not moon about with books and papers. They would have spoken sharply but...