By Monica Latham (auth.)
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Extra info for A Poetics of Postmodernism and Neomodernism: Rewriting Mrs Dalloway
Notebook, Berg Collection, Wussow 412) As the central double Dallowayism sanity/insanity already appears as the emerging scaffolding that supports the whole design of the novel, Woolf is carefully considering creating connections to sustain the two poles of the duality while at the same time building more contrast between them. She also intends to give an accelerated impulse to the alternating rhythm of her prose. The dual, parallel progression of the novel is further to be driven by a special dynamic, namely the deepening of Septimus’s insanity on the one hand (his visions are to become more fleshed out, expanded, developed, more and more dense and obsessive, as his hallucinations snatch him from reality more and more often and suddenly) and the acceleration of time converging towards the party hosted by Clarissa on the other hand.
The author gradually probes her main characters’ minds deeper and deeper and creates more complex links between them. Septimus’s mind becomes more luminous and his hallucinations acquire a painterly quality, as I shall demonstrate through specific examples further on in this chapter. The rough, unpolished gems originating in the two short stories are little by little worked on, developed, rendered more elaborate and more poetic to become confirmed Dallowayisms that permeate the whole novel. The Dalloway-esque ‘queer’ and ‘masterful’ design: digging caves and building tunnels Virginia Woolf’s next step in the process of composition consists in expanding upon the essential Dalloway-esque kernels that originated in ‘Mrs Dalloway in Bond Street’ and ‘The Prime Minister’.
I insubstantise, wilfully to some extent, distrusting reality – its cheapness. But to get further. Have I the power of conveying the true reality? Or do I write essays about myself? ] ‘The Dressing-rooms’ 45 I foresee, to return to The Hours, that this is going to be the devil of a struggle. The design is so queer & so masterful. I’m always having to wrench my substance to fit it. The design is certainly original, & interests me hugely. I should like to write away & away at it, very quick and fierce.