Decentring discourse, self-centred politics: radicalism and the self in Virginia Woolf's Mrs Dalloway

Delgado-Garcia, C. (2010) Decentring discourse, self-centred politics: radicalism and the self in Virginia Woolf's Mrs Dalloway. Atlantis: Journal of the Spanish Association of Anglo-American Studies, 31(1), pp. 15-28.

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Abstract

The present paper analyses the narrative devices by which the Woolfian, anti-essentialist notion of subjectivity is produced in Mrs Dalloway. This analysis aims to critically assess the novel's decentring discourse on selfhood in a political light. Focusing on the self-definition of the characters at the time of the fiction, the first section examines the discursive production of Clarissa Dalloway's diffused and connective self. The second section of this paper considers the politics of memory within the production of identity in the novel, taking the Bergsonian notions of élan vital and open morality as a theoretical framework. The analysis of the production of selfhood in Mrs Dalloway at a synchronic (self-definition in the diegetic present time) and diachronic level (definition through memory) uncovers strong phallogocentric and conservative tensions in the novel, tensions that may have been overlooked as a result of Virginia Woolf's own progressive politics.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Delgado-Garcia, Dr Cristina
Authors: Delgado-Garcia, C.
College/School:College of Arts > School of Culture and Creative Arts > Theatre Film and TV Studies
Journal Name:Atlantis: Journal of the Spanish Association of Anglo-American Studies
Publisher:Asociacion Espanola de Estudios Anglo-Norteamericanos,Spanish Association for Anglo-American Studies
ISSN:0210-6124
ISSN (Online):1989-6840

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