IMAGE OF A CREATIVE WOMAN IN VIRGINIA WOOLF’S ESSAYS
This paper presents an analysis of the essays "A Room of One's Own" and "The Common Reader" by the famous modernist writer Virginia Woolf. In these essays, the author discusses women's rights and brings forward such problems as gender inequality, the pressure of patriarchal society and the psychological impact on women. In "A Room of One's Own" there is an argumentative discussion about why there is a shortage of female writers in the world's literary scene. Woolf tells us that women had to overcome many obstacles in getting an education, they were financially dependent on men, had no personal space to express their creative talents. Woolf notes that history and literature tell us differently about women. While women are underrepresented in history until the 18th century, literature has always had strong female characters, as illustrated by Cleopatra or Lady Macbeth. Women's financial dependence, social pressure and aspirations of the patriarchal society have always prevented them from realizing themselves creatively. The central figure of the essay is William Shakespeare's imaginary sister, Judith Shakespeare, by illustrating her destiny, the writer perfectly shows how different the society's attitude towards creative men and women is, and Judith's tragic life once again convinces us of what a woman's fate could be in the creative arena. The essays also include discussion of famous women writers and their struggles, and finally gives us a discussion of certain characteristics of a good novel. As for the collection of essays 'The Common Reader', here Woolf gives a more extensive review of women writers working in different eras and the peculiarities of their work, style and manner of writing, including the works of George Eliot, the Brontë sisters and Margaret Cavendish. The conclusion summarizes the discussion and the significance of Virginia Woolf's essays in feminist literature.
Keywords: Virginia Woolf, essays, feminist literature, creative women.