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Virginia Woolf and Heritage$
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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

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“Where Childhood’s dreams are twined”: Virginia Woolf and the Literary Heritage of Lewis Carroll

“Where Childhood’s dreams are twined”: Virginia Woolf and the Literary Heritage of Lewis Carroll

(p.121) “Where Childhood’s dreams are twined”: Virginia Woolf and the Literary Heritage of Lewis Carroll
Virginia Woolf and Heritage

Lois Gilmore

Liverpool University Press

Philadelphia is celebrating 150 years of Alice in Wonderland with public programming and multiple exhibitions beginning in 2015 through 2016. There are lectures, tea parties, hands-on tours at the Rosenbach of the Free Library of Philadelphia, talks of medical oddities of Alice, costume parties, and more. Carroll’s original manuscript is traveling around the East coast in pop-up displays in Philadelphia and New York. This focus on Lewis Carroll’s work provides an intriguing opportunity to examine Woolf’s review, which was written on the occasion of the Nonesuch Press issue of the complete works in 1939. Woolf ‘s response to Carroll’s legacy, in the midst of what she calls “non-war” and “written in barren horror,” hones in on the construction of childhood, the relationship of the child to the adult, and the illusory nature of the author. Woolf’s diary entries, documenting what she calls the many distractions surrounding her, point to the irony of composition and the world Carroll creates. In this paper I will approach these topics and consider the ways in which Woolf reflects on, engages with, and represents the connections and disconnections with the literary heritage of Alice and her enduring appeal.

Keywords:   Childhood, Lewis Carroll, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Looking glass

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