“Notice, and am gratified by, large clump of crocuses near the front gate. Should like to make whimsical and charming reference to these and try to fancy myself as ‘Elizabeth of the German Garden’, but am interrupted by Cook, saying that the Fish is here, but he’s only bought cod and haddock, and the haddock doesn’t smell any too fresh, so what about cod? Have often noticed that Life is like that.”
First published in 1930, this charming, funny book is a warm portrait of a middle-class English family and their village life. Our heroine recounts the mundane delights and disasters of her household, dealing with constant money worries, the challenges of finding & keeping a really good parlourmaid, and how best to retain grace towards her fellow humans in the face of their astonishing range of foibles. It’s also a wonderfully genuine description of a marriage, with all the little ups and downs of rubbing along with the same person for so many years.
(Summary by Cori Samuel)
This feminist essay argues for both a literal and figural space for women writers within a literary tradition dominated by patriarchy. First published on 24 October 1929, the extended essay was based on a series of lectures delivered by Virginia Woolf at Cambridge University in October 1928. While it employs a fictional narrator and narrative to explore women both as writers of and characters in fiction, the manuscript for the delivery of the series of lectures, titled “Women and Fiction”, and hence the essay, are non-fiction. [Summary adapted from Wikipedia by Cori Samuel.]