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Virginia Woolf Good morning Mrs Maitland and class A woman must have money and a room of her own if she is to write fiction, is the famous dictum written by a prolific novelist and essayist Virginia Woolf from her novel called A room of one™s own. Virginia Woolf, a publisher, writer of short stories, critic, diarist, autobiographer, biographer and publisher of over 500 essays is described as one of the foremost modernist literary figures of the twentieth century She is recognised as one of the major figures of modern literature and is highly regarded both for her innovative fiction techniques and insightful contributions to literary criticism. Her famous works include the novels Mrs Dalloway, The Voyager, To the Lighthouse, Orlando, the Waves, Three Guineas, and the book length essay A room of ones™s own. She is highly praised as an extraordinary and influential modernist writer throughout history. Besides incorporating feminism in her writing, her unique style, incorporation of symbolism and use of similes and metaphors in her literature, specifically in Mrs Dalloway, To the lighthouse and The waves. makes her an influential author. Adeline Virginia Stephen, later known as Virginia Woolf was born on January the 25th 1882 into a talented and well distinguished literary family. Sir Leslie Stephen, Virginia™ father, was a notable historian, author, critic and a mountaineer. Julia, Virginia™s mother was a renowned beauty and served as a model before pursuing a career in nursing. Viginia™s parents had each been married previously and had been widowed, so consequently the household at 22 Hyde Park, Kensington, London contained the children of three marriages. Virginia was the third of Leslie and Julia Stephen four children. The Stephens had access to an immense library, from which Virginia and her sister were taught the classics and English literature. In 1895 the Stephens comfortable existence was disrupted by the sudden, tragic death of their beloved mother, Julia. Virginias subsequent mental breakdown was the first of several that troubled her throughout her life. The death of her fathers in 1904 provoked her most alarming collapse and she was briefly institutionalised. Though her mental breakdowns greatly affected her social functioning, her literary abilities remained intact. Virginia and her sister Vanessa and brother Adrian moved to Gordon Square in the Bloomsbury district of London. It was there the Bloomsbury Group was formed to discuss the arts . During this time, she published her first essays and reviews, a practice she continued throughout her life. She began writing professionally in 1905 initially for the Times Literacy Supplement. In 1912 she married Leonard Woolf, a writer and socialist political figure. In 1913, after completing her first novel, The Voyage Out , the book about the home of the Bronte family, She suffered a mental breakdown. Despite her unstable childhood, she was an original thinker and a revolutionary writer . She expressed characters in a way that no other writers had done before. During the period 1922 to 1941, Virginia immersed herself in writing fiction, completing the critically acclaimed novels Mrs. Dalloway, To the Lighthouse, and The Waves, which form the foundation of her literary reputation. She explored such themes as the elusive nature of story telling and character study, the nature of truth and reality, and the role of women in society. Her novels captured ordinary experience while depicting the workings and perceptions of the human mind. Woolf is considered one of the greatest innovators in the English literature. In her works she experimented with stream of consciousness. The novel, Mrs Dollaway centres on the efforts of Clarissa Dalloway, a middle aged society woman. This novel caused others to re-evaluate the society in which they lived therefore this makes her an influential author. The novel, the lighthouse is where she gave attention to detail and use of direct and indirect speech and varied sentence lengths in this novel are distinctiveness of Woolf™s style. Although she was a great admirer of many authors at that time, she found their work to be lacking in depth of character. Yet, despite these successes, Woolf feared the onslaught of another nervous breakdown”from which, she believed, it would be impossible to recover”and on the 28th of march 1941, she took her own life by drowning. In conclusion, Viginia Woolfs work fascinates me. Her writing has generated passion and controversy for the best part of a century. Her novels today are still immensely popular with both students and academics. Virginia Woolf remains one of the most fascinating and enigmatic writers of the twentieth century.-Y