VIRGINIA WOOLF was born Adeline Virginia Stephen at 22 Hyde Park Gate in London. Woolf was educated by her parents in their literate and well-connected household at 22 Hyde Park Gate, Kensington. Woolf began writing professionally in 1900. Her first novel, The Voyage Out, was published in 1915 by her half-brother's imprint, Gerald Duckworth and Company Ltd. Woolf went on to publish novels and essays as a public intellectual to both critical and popular success. Much of her work was self-published through the Hogarth Press. She is seen as a major twentieth-century novelist and one of the foremost modernists. Woolf is considered a major innovator in the English language. In her works she experimented with stream of consciousness and the underlying psychological as well as emotional motives of characters. Woolf's reputation declined sharply after World War II, but her importance was re-established with the growth of feminist criticism in the 1970s.
DEATH OF THE MOTH
In "Death of a Moth" by Virginia Woolf, Woolf compares the wonder of life and death by using a moth as an example of the simplicity of life and death and the need to accept the inevitable, although putting up a fight is an essential part of the process.
Woolf describes a mostly overlooked creature, the moth, as it exists in nature, particularly on this September day. The writer is unable to concentrate, captivated by the moth, but also distracted by the work in the fields and the movements of the birds. The life of the moth she considers "pathetic," especially as this is not even a real moth because it flies during the day. It is insignificant in the scheme of things. This, Woolf reveals however, is exactly the point. It becomes apparent that the moth is dying and, the writer, at first intending to help the creature, decides that she should not. On further reflection, Woolf points out that the moth's struggles are indicative of life in general as nothing "had any chance against death." The...
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