Date of Completion
Honors College Thesis
Type of Thesis
Honors College, College of Arts and Science Honors
Woolf, Joyce, Mrs. Dalloway, Ulysses
James Joyce and Virginia Woolf might retroactively be associated as allies in psychological realism, but Woolf’s response to Joyce’s Ulysses was complex. This thesis studies and contextualizes her response, revealing how Woolf encountered, wrestled with, and went beyond Ulysses. It attempts to resolve differing scholarly views by examining her reactions in her diaries, letters, reading notes, and essays, and by proposing a reading of Mrs. Dalloway as Woolf’s creative response to Ulysses. Contextualizing her response shows how gender, class, social relations, and personal traumas are related to Woolf’s experience of Ulysses and confidence as a writer. These challenges informed her response to Ulysses and her writing of Mrs. Dalloway. Ultimately, Woolf appreciated Joyce’s attempt at psychological realism, but felt that his book failed. In Mrs. Dalloway, Woolf adopted the imperatives that Ulysses inspired, but went beyond Ulysses as she perfected her composed style and wrote the perspective of a woman.
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Thorup, Sophie Ryan, "'Let Us Record the Atoms As They Fall Upon the Mind': Virginia Woolf Wrestles With James Joyce's Ulysses" (2017). UVM Honors College Senior Theses. 176.