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Virginia Woolf and Her Female Contemporaries$
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Julie Vandivere and Megan Hicks

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9781942954088

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: May 2017

DOI: 10.5949/liverpool/9781942954088.001.0001

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date: 23 October 2018

Splintered Sexualities in Rebecca West’s The Return of the Soldier, Virginia Woolf’s Mrs. Dalloway, and Sylvia Townsend Warner’s “A Love Match”

Splintered Sexualities in Rebecca West’s The Return of the Soldier, Virginia Woolf’s Mrs. Dalloway, and Sylvia Townsend Warner’s “A Love Match”

Chapter:
(p.196) Splintered Sexualities in Rebecca West’s The Return of the Soldier, Virginia Woolf’s Mrs. Dalloway, and Sylvia Townsend Warner’s “A Love Match”
Source:
Virginia Woolf and Her Female Contemporaries
Author(s):

Vara Neverow

Publisher:
Liverpool University Press
DOI:10.5949/liverpool/9781942954088.003.0028

Chris Baldry in Rebecca West’s debut novel The Return of the Soldier (1918), Septimus Warren Smith in Virginia Woolf’s Mrs. Dalloway (1925), and the siblings Justin Tizard and Celia Tizard in Sylvia Townsend Warner’s “A Love Match” (1961) all struggle with sexual attractions generated either by the trauma of direct exposure to the horrors of the Great War or by the side-effects of the war. Each of the characters discussed must cope with war-driven sexual confusion that violates the cultural restraints circumscribing sex and marriage while forbidding the transgressions of homosexuality and incest. The essay explores how the characters cope with their war-induced emotional distress and how their sufferings are offset through moments of intense love and euphoria that transcend all conventions. The essay also takes into account issues relating to censorship, particularly with regard to the timeframe of publication for Warner’s work.

Keywords:   Sexuality, Trauma, The Great War, Transgression, Incest, Homosexuality, Marriage, Love, Censorship

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