An overview of Essays

Woolf Online contains fourteen essays written by Virginia Woolf during the two years she was working on the novel, specifically from 14 May 1925 when she recorded in her diary her "desire" to begin the novel she had by then named To the Lighthouse, and extending through November, 1927, when she published "The Novels of E.M. Forster," one of two essays on the site that treat Forster's writings (the other is "Is Fiction an Art?") that were important to Woolf's experiments with narrative perspective. Here you will find both images of the original publications and transcriptions. Woolf wrote sixty essays during this time span; limited time and resources have prevented us from including all the essays on the site. We have selected some of the most well-known, including two, "The Cinema" and "Impassioned Prose," that she was writing while drafting "Time Passes" and that appear as well on the pilot site, and three that appear in some form in Woolf's manuscript notebooks ("Robinson Crusoe," "Sterne's Ghost," "How Should One Read a Book?"). We have also included her introduction to Julia Margaret Cameron's collection of photographs, which so prominently features Julia Jackson, Cameron's niece and Woolf's mother, who was the prototype for Mrs. Ramsay. The sources for the original essays are noted on the site. Transcriptions of these essays were made from the originals by Pamela Caughie and Elizabeth Hanson. Mounted and organised by Nick Hayward.