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Virginia Woolf's Orlando and the Feminist Reader: Feminist Reader Response Theory in Orlando: a Biography
Linnaeus University, Faculty of Arts and Humanities, Department of Languages.
2014 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

This essay is a close reading of Virginia Woolf’s Orlando: a Biography that focuses on representation of gender in the novel and the possible response it elicits in the reader.

The essay argues that the implied reader of Orlando - as manifested in the novel - is a feminist one, as well as it explores the possibility of this implied feminist reader being a female. The reasons as to why this could be are extensively examined by analyzing the main character Orlando as he metamorphoses from an English nobleman into a grown woman. To support the thesis, the essay looks both into reader response criticism and feminist criticism to clarify what an implied reader actually is. The similarities between Orlando and “A Room of One’s Own” are also touched upon as these suggest that the implied reader is a feminist. The essay then takes a closer look at the narrator of the novel and what this narrator suggests about the identity of the implied reader of the novel. In addition to this it is also concluded that s/he controls the reader’s perception of Orlando’s gender in the novel, and that this also echoes the ideals presented in “A Room of One’s Own”.

The essay concludes that the implied reader of Orlando indeed is a feminist, but not necessarily a female one. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2014. , 27 p.
Keyword [en]
Virginia Woolf, Feminism, Feminist Reader Response Theory, Reader Response, Orlando, Feminist Reader, Female Reader
National Category
Humanities Languages and Literature
URN: urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-32476OAI: diva2:698906
Subject / course
Educational program
Language, Culture and Communication Programme, 180 credits
2014-01-08, Backagårdsvägen 10, växjö, 15:39 (English)
Available from: 2014-03-04 Created: 2014-02-25 Last updated: 2014-03-04Bibliographically approved

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