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Interdisciplinary/Multidisciplinary Woolf$
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Ann Martin and Kathryn Holland

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780989082624

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: January 2016

DOI: 10.5949/liverpool/9780989082624.001.0001

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The Hotel at the End of the Universe

The Hotel at the End of the Universe

Chapter:
(p.225) The Hotel at the End of the Universe
Source:
Interdisciplinary/Multidisciplinary Woolf
Author(s):

Steven D. Putzel

Publisher:
Liverpool University Press
DOI:10.5949/liverpool/9780989082624.003.0028

This chapter examines the history of Leonard Woolf's play The Hotel and its non-production, despite—or perhaps because of—the timeliness of its treatment of war when it was published in 1939 and reissued in 1963. The late 1930s was an extraordinarily painful yet productive time for both Leonard and Virginia Woolf. Virginia had just completed The Years (1937), and was writing Three Guineas (1938), the biography of Roger Fry (1940), and Between the Acts (1941). Leonard's only play, The Hotel, published in 1939, l is a three-act, multi-layered allegory that critiques Judeo-Christian values, the destructive power of unregulated capitalism, and the political intrigue leading up to World War II. The rest of the chapter discusses Leonard Woolfs quest to see The Hotel produced, suggesting that its “non-production” can be attributed to the fact that Woolf was ahead of his time, introducing absurdist theatrical techniques in an age still dominated by realism and melodrama.

Keywords:   play, Leonard Woolf, The Hotel, allegory, World War II, non-production, realism, melodrama

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