Mrs: Mind and Modernist Literature Essay

Submitted By morgentruver
Words: 359
Pages: 2

A key text that perfectly exemplifies modernist literature is “Mrs. Dalloway”, written by Virginia Woolf, because of her aim to move away from traditionalist forms of fiction, to come “closer to life”, and to capture the moments of life, good and bad. Woolf saw the conventional “realist” novel as an inadequate form of expression, preferring to use her own unique form of writing using a character’s disjointed view of the world and stream of consciousness effectively.
Considering themes in “Mrs. Dalloway” there are several that clearly run parallel with modernist ideas and other pieces of modernist literature. Isolation and alienation are key issues seen in the post-war novel. Significant lines from the book emphasize the contrast of the chaos of public city life and the quiet privacy of the soul and the protagonist’s deep thoughts. Clarissa, even when she is walking through the crowded streets, considers the essential loneliness of life. This idea is another link to the modernist’s tendency to right about isolation and one’s distance from society.
Characters dealt with in modernist literature are often thought- tormented, suffering individuals, as seen in Woolf's novel with Clarissa and Septimus in particular. The character’s ever-changing thoughts are shown, and how they think and reflect as they move through their surroundings revealing their reactions. This astatic portrayal of the human mind her is clearly linked to the modernist writer’s conventional use of stream of