A special edition of the “moving, revolutionary” novel about one day in a woman’s life (Michael Cunningham)—with extensive notes from a renowned Woolf scholar.
When we meet her, Mrs. Clarissa Dalloway is preoccupied with the last-minute details of party preparation, though in her mind she is something much more than a perfect society hostess. As she readies her house, she is flooded with remembrances of faraway times. And, met with the realities of the present, Clarissa reexamines the choices that brought her there, hesitantly looking ahead to the unfamiliar work of growing old.
It is a work of art that still inspires today, leading author Michael Cunningham, for example, to write his bestseller The Hours. As Cunningham explains: “Mrs. Dalloway was the first novel to split the atom. If the novel before Mrs. Dalloway aspired to immensities of scope and scale, to heroic journeys across vast landscapes, with Mrs. Dalloway Virginia Woolf insisted that it could also locate the enormous within the everyday; that a life of errands and party-giving was every bit as viable a subject as any life lived anywhere; and that should any human act in any novel seem unimportant, it has merely been inadequately observed. The novel as an art form has not been the same since.”
This edition, annotated and introduced by Bonnie Scott, offers notes on the text as well as invaluable critical analysis, and suggestions for further reading.