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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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War, Peace, Internationalism

War, Peace, Internationalism

Bloomsbury Legacies

(p.128) War, Peace, Internationalism
Virginia Woolf and the Common(wealth) Reader

Christine Froula

Liverpool University Press

This chapter focuses on the play by Cambridge historian and Apostle Goldsworthy (Goldie) Lowes Dickinson entitled “War and Peace: A Dramatic Fantasia” (staged 1917). Serving as Goldie's riposte to war-extolling Italian Futurist and protofascist F. T. Marinetti, the play co-opts the Futurist to stage in the public art of theater the international contest between war and peace that preceded the Great War and roiled on through the interwar period to the Second World War and beyond. The play presages not only Dickinson's indefatigable labors on behalf of international peace after 1914 but a pervasive sense, in and beyond Bloomsbury, that the Great War marked less a “break” than “an intensification of many old struggles,” as Virginia Woolf later described it: interlocking conflicts at home and abroad that the Great War could not and did not resolve. Goldie's panoply of John Bull's clashes at home and abroad not only foregrounds world-shattering technologies from the aeroplane to nuclear energy and the atomic bomb but also stages intra-national, nationalist, international, and transnational rivalries for global resources and power that burst the conventional historiographic bounds both of the 1914–1918 war and, no less, of concerted work toward peace.

Keywords:   Virginia Woolf, Goldsworthy Lowes Dickinson, plays, War and Peace, Futurism, F. T. Marinetti, Great War

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