Mrs Dalloway Analysis Essay

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Mrs Dalloway”, Virginia Woolf’s modernist novel which mimics the unjust nature of 1920’s society in England focuses on the dark places of British culture at that time, and more importantly, the nature of its upper class. Woolf explores the patriarchal authoritarian abuses that were prevalent within this society, such as the oppression of women, colonial races and the mentally ill. Woolf deals with Britain’s infatuation with empire within the novel, as is evident throughout the passage through mention of “the car”, and the “slight ripple” it creates amongst the ordinary people on both sides of Bond Street. Having all the ladies’ heads “inclined the same way” and having the ladies “stopped” allows Woolf to place emphasis on the amount of attention patriarchy receives in this society, as it is able to interrupt and pause the lives of every person, thus every life that is overcome by patriarchy, in the street. in that it can pause a whole group of complete strangers’ conscious nesses simply by driving through it. The pauses scattered throughout this section of the passage work with the omniscient narrator to give full effect to Woolf’s use of the stream of consciousness as a technique of writing, in that it can be read as if it were someone’s thoughts. In this way the pauses, from when women look “to the window”, suddenly back to “choosing a pair of gloves” resembles the thought process of an ordinary woman on a normal day. Woolf also uses repetition of the word “shop” to emphasise this point of the normality of these women in their average lives, and to create a rhythm within her words as to symbolize the rhythm that accompanies the fast pace of London life. Woolf then continues with her technique of perfect integrity whilst focusing on imperialism and the like to, through Clarissa Dalloway’s eyes, ponder mortality, as “strangers looked at each other and thought of the dead; of the flag; of Empire”, noting the use of a capital letter to begin the word empire,...
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