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Virginia Woolf and the Common(wealth) Reader$
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Helen Wussow and Mary Ann Gillies

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780989082679

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: January 2016

DOI: 10.5949/liverpool/9780989082679.001.0001

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date: 23 November 2017

“The Death of a Beautiful Man”

“The Death of a Beautiful Man”

Rupert Brooke in Memory and Imagination

Chapter:
(p.50) “The Death of a Beautiful Man”
Source:
Virginia Woolf and the Common(wealth) Reader
Author(s):

Paul Delany

Publisher:
Liverpool University Press
DOI:10.5949/liverpool/9780989082679.003.0007

This chapter considers how Woolf used people she knew for fictional ends. In the title of this chapter, “memory” stands for Woolf's actual relations with Brooke and other young men, especially her brother Thoby, and “imagination” stands for her freedom to modify those relations in the interest of her fiction. Woolf often made those who were close to her objects of fantasy; in her novels she added the further dimension of fictional license. The phrase she used for this license was “founded on”: not “based on” or “modeled on,” as we usually say. She seems to mean that an actual person can be a foundation on which various kinds of new structures can be raised. In fact, several foundations, since a single character in one of her novels may be a composite of a number of individuals.

Keywords:   Virginia Woolf, Rupert Brooke, memory, imagination, Thoby, fiction

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