Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Virginia Woolf and Heritage$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Jane deGay, Tom Breckin, and Anne Reus

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9781942954422

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: September 2018

DOI: 10.5949/liverpool/9781942954422.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM LIVERPOOL SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.liverpool.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Liverpool University Press, 2020. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in LSO for personal use.date: 03 June 2020

“Against you I will fling myself, unvanquished and unyielding, O Death!”: Vanessa Bell’s Death of the Moth Dust Jacket as Monument to Virginia Woolf

“Against you I will fling myself, unvanquished and unyielding, O Death!”: Vanessa Bell’s Death of the Moth Dust Jacket as Monument to Virginia Woolf

Chapter:
(p.80) “Against you I will fling myself, unvanquished and unyielding, O Death!”: Vanessa Bell’s Death of the Moth Dust Jacket as Monument to Virginia Woolf
Source:
Virginia Woolf and Heritage
Author(s):

Hana Leaper

Publisher:
Liverpool University Press
DOI:10.5949/liverpool/9781942954422.003.0011

During my work cataloguing, conserving and researching the Angelica Garnett Gift at Charleston, I was privileged to study Bell’s sketchbooks closely. They include a number of studies for cover designs for Woolf’s books. Multiple jacket sketches for The Death of the Moth reside within a blue flipbook marked ‘VB’. Published in 1942, this collection of essays was the second of Woolf’s work to be released posthumously. By closely tracing Bell’s design process and making comparisons with the finished cover, it became evident that rather than being swiftly and intuitively delivered – as has usually been accepted by scholars discussing Bell’s dust jackets – this cover was carefully thought-out and painfully laboured over. The many variations of the design contain deeply symbolic imagery pertaining to Monk’s House that reveal this work as a deeply private, yet highly visible monument to her sister’s talent and their creative relationship. The moths that flutter through Woolf’s oeuvre originated in the sisters’ shared childhood pursuit of lepidoptery, and this paper will trace the process through which this symbolic motif become encoded within this dust jacket as a tribute to both writer and her writing, together with the enduring legacy of Monk’s House on both Woolf and Bell’s imaginative processes. Based on the topography of Monk’s House garden, Bell’s cover anticipates its importance as a heritage site and a monument to Woolf.

Keywords:   Vanessa Bell, dustjackets, Death of the Moth, sketchbook, Charleston, Rodmell, photography, gardens, The Waves

Liverpool Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.