Slow At Times, But Picks Up! Sarah Nasseri

by capreviewroom

Mrs. Dalloway, a novel by Virgina Woolf, has many dominant themes which shape the story and the actions in which the characters take throughout the story. Clarissa Dalloway, Peter Walsh, and Septimus Smith are the three main characters whose lives, individual from one another, manage to somehow intertwine.

            The story does not endure a long time span; instead, it explains the events which occur in one day. This is both a strange and refreshing change from most novels which unfold over months, or even years. With that being said, it also proves to be immensely confusing; chapters seem to be nonexistent, and you are left guessing as to whose point of view you are reading. That is quite a general flaw which does not really affect the novels quality whatsoever.

            There are not that many relationships throughout the novel. Clarissa and Peter seem to be the closest, although their relationship is far from perfect. An unconventional, yet extremely significant relationship in this book most definitely resides in Clarissa’s feelings toward Septimus—notably after his death. Although it is not too obvious, Clarissa and Septimus share a bond—unspoken, tragic, but nevertheless, there. After Septimus passes, Clarissa feels a strong sense of sadness, and feels as if she needs to go on living, for the both of them.

            The themes which are predominant in the novels are themes of death, remembrance, and melancholy. These themes are noticeable throughout the whole novel, specifically when the focus is on either Septimus or Clarissa. These two seem to share a morbid way of thinking, although for very different reasons. Clarissa’s unhappiness is confusing, and comes from her dissatisfaction with life. Septimus, however, has a legitimate reason, this reason being all the physiological damages he attributed after the war.

            The novel proves itself to be an interesting piece of work—due mainly to the stream of consciousness literary style, and its morbid themes. Once you get into it, it will surely not disappoint.  

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