Virginia Woolf’s a Haunted House: Literary Analysis

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Virginia Woolf’s a Haunted House: Literary Analysis

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The short story "A Haunted House" is story with meaning, by portraying to us the treasure of life. When two ghosts are searching through their old house, looking for their "Treasure", the treasure or meaning is revealed to us. The joy and love shared between two people is the treasure, the treasure of life. By using irony and stream of consciousness Virginia Woolf is able to reveal the meaning of the story.

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Virginia Woolf uses a style called the "Stream of Consciousness", revealing the lives of her characters by revealing their thoughts and associations. We learn about the ghosts past by seeing what they thoughts and associated with there pasts. For example when they were discussing death she put " "Here we slept," she said. And he adds, "Kisses without number." "Waking in the morning_" "Silver between the trees." "Upstairs-" "In the garden-" "When summer came-" "In the winter snowtime-" "( A Haunted House Pg. 321). This quote shows us what places and actions the ghosts associate with there joy and love. Using stream of consciousness gives us a better feeling of what the characters are going through, which in turn gives us a better understanding of the meaning.

We also see the use of irony, using a word or phrase to mean the exact opposite of its literal or normal meaning. The irony is that the story is titled "A Haunted House" which made us think that the house was an evil place. The house ends up being where every thing good happens. The ghosts did not haunt the people , instead they make them realize the treasure they have. By seeing how much the ghosts valued finding their treasure it makes the people take a harder look at what their treasure is, the love and joy they share. It is very evident when she says " Now they found it, one would be certain, stopping the pencil on the margin. And then, tired of reading, one might rise and see for one self"(A Haunted House Pg. 321). The irony draws use in by making us think that we are about read a trivial ghost story, but instead, gives us a deeper and more meaningful interpretation of ones life.

By Virginia Woolfs use of, streaming consciousness and irony she is rather dramatically able to portray her thoughts on the meaning of "A Haunted House". That the joy and love shared between two people is the treasure of life.

A Meaningful Ghost Story

Works cited

  1. Woolf, V. (1921). A Haunted House. Hogarth Press.
  2. Barnett, L. (1995). Virginia Woolf and the Languages of Patriarchy. Penn State Press.
  3. Dickinson, A. (2015). Virginia Woolf and the Modern Sublime. Edinburgh University Press.
  4. Marcus, J. (2010). Virginia Woolf: A Feminist Slant. University of Nebraska Press.
  5. Schreiber, E. A. (2018). Stream of Consciousness: A Study in Literary Method. Routledge.
  6. Dettmar, K. J. H. (2014). The Cambridge Companion to Modernist Culture. Cambridge University Press.
  7. Fernald, A. (2005). Virginia Woolf: Feminism and the Reader. Palgrave Macmillan.
  8. Showalter, E. (2012). A Literature of Their Own: British Women Novelists from Bronte to Lessing. Princeton University Press.
  9. Woolf, V. (1929). A Room of One's Own. Hogarth Press.
  10. Holcomb, B. (2002). Virginia Woolf: The Will to Create as a Woman. Routledge.

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