Literary analysis of virginia wolfe's, professions for women

Page 1 of 2

Literary analysis of virginia wolfe's, professions for women

By | Jan. 2012
Page 1 of 2
Fueled by the frustration of the masculine control that dominated her era, Virginia Woolf displayed her deepest feelings of oppression in her essay “Professions for Women”. Written in 1931, “Professions for Women” shows the internal conflict many women battled fiercely with when living their everyday lives. Woolf tells a story of a figurative “Angel in the House”, which is a stereotypical woman of the Victorian era and her efforts to break free from this stereotypical template. Woolf felt that for women to show men their true potential, they must wander beyond what society expects them to be and become an individual. Virginia Woolf’s skillful utilization of metaphorical diction and repetitious phrases help present her ideals to the reader while remaining rhetorically efficient. The “Angel in the House” example was referred to in numerous occasions in “Professions for Women”. The Angel was “charming”, “sympathetic” and “sympathetic” all qualities of a stereotypical woman in the Victorian era. Woolf’s diction implied dislike towards the Angel, stating “it was she who bothered me and wasted my time and so tormented me that at last I killed her”. Yet through extensive criticism, Woolf still referred to the Angel as “pure” and spoke of her good characteristics. The Angel in the House was a good thing and a bad thing. Good because all of her qualities were quite positive and seemed like a nice person, but bad because inadvertently, all these caring characteristics were holding women back from becoming their own individual. Instead of being an independent thinker, the Angel depended on men to support her and did not hesitate to serve them. The Angel would torment Woolf, telling her “Never let anybody guess you have a mind of your own” and because of the Angel’s messages; Woolf was forced to metaphorically “kill” the Angel to be able to think for herself. The Angel encompassed everything Woolf wanted to avoid; a naïve, oblivious woman who was undermined by her masculine...