This month for our book discussion we are going to do something a little different. In the past we have focused on books of a mainly religious nature, but this month we are turning to a classic in the world gender issues - Virginia Woolf's A Room of One's Own
. First published nearly 80 years ago, Woolf's book has defined for generations of women the struggles women often face in the academic and intellectual world.
I first read this book early in college in a Women Writer's class (an elective of course). At the time I was a good little conservative complementarian who thought any argument for women's rights was feminist and therefore evil. The irony of the fact that I was a woman getting an education and therefore benefiting from the rights people like Woolf fought for completely eluded me. I was more than willing to accept the gifts of the early feminists (the right to vote, have a job, own property, have a bank account, get an education) while condemning the very philosophy that granted me those rights. I read the book with very different eyes a decade later. I understood Woolf arguments and frustrations better, and I marveled at how her dreams and predictions for the future have played out.
But before we delve into the content of the book, I would like to hear about your experiences with early feminist writers. Have you encountered Woolf before? In what contexts and mindsets? Have you ever studied the lives of the women who fought for basic rights for women? Have such stories been encouraged in your life or hidden?
Labels: A Room of One's Own, Book Discussions, Gender Issues