Virginia Woolf’s Notebooks

Virginia Woolf’s Notebooks

Treasures of the New York Public Library

A modernist and feminist pioneer, Virginia Woolf (1882–1941) carved out new territory for artists, particularly women writers. She wrote with sensitivity and insight about the confusion, mystery and uncertainty of everyday life. Part of Woolf’s innovation was to reject traditional plots in favour of explorations of the inner lives of her characters. Her stream-of-consciousness narratives brought sharp yet fleeting glimpses into truths of gender relations, psychology and the power of the poetic perspective.

Woolf’s 1931 novel The Waves, originally drafted in a series of seven notebooks including those reproduced for these covers, is among her best and most experimental works and is made up of soliloquies spoken by the six main characters. Today, these seven notebooks are a part of The New York Public Library’s Henry W. and Albert A. Berg Collection of English and American Literature and are featured in the new Polonsky Exhibition of The New York Public Library Treasures. We are honoured to partner with the Library to bring Woolf’s The Waves notebooks to our collection.

For fans of: Virginia Woolf, women writers, experimental fiction, The New York Public Library, Embellished Manuscripts, Special Editions