Dora Zhang

Dec 8, 2022

On Virginia Woolf’s "Mrs Dalloway"

A Discussion with Dora Zhang

New Books Network 2022

In the early 20th century, Europe and North America were undergoing a radical transformation. Scientific, technological, and political changes disrupted many traditional forms of life. The growth of cities opened up new freedoms and opportunities and scientists like Sigmund Freud and Ernst Mach were developing new theories about how we perceive the world and construct reality. These cultural changes gave birth to a form of art that reflected the new sensibilities of this era—modernism. The modernist literary movement was characterized in particular by its interest in revealing the inner psychology of its characters. And few texts were as successful in this goal as Virginia Woolf’s 1925 novel Mrs Dalloway. Dora Zhang is Associate professor of English and Comparative Literature at UC Berkeley. She is the author of Strange Likeness: Description and the Modernist Novel. See more information on our website,

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