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BOOK REVIEWS textual apparatus. Graduate level professors might require it as a text in a specialized course on Virginia Woolf, providing it is available in the United States. Those using the novel in undergraduate courses, however , would probably choose either the Penguin or the Oxford editions for their lower cost, almost equal textual reliability, and comparable introductions and notes. The Shakespeare Head Press is to be congratulated for the care it has lavished on this new series of Virginia Woolfs major works, but I fear readership for Orlando will be limited to those for whom a "definitive" text is essential. Dean Baldwin Penn State Erie, The Behrend College Bloomsbury S. P. Rosenbaum. Aspects of Bloomsbury: Studies in Modern English Literary and Intellectual History. London: Macmillan, 1998. 215 pp. $45.00 S. P. ROSENBAUM'S contribution to the scholarly industry that is Bloomsbury continues to grow. His Victorian Bloomsbury (1987), Edwardian Bloomsbury (1994), and soon to be released Georgian Bloomsbury, not to mention the subsequent volumes promised in the first decade of the next millennium, reflect the persistent allure ofthat group of friends and relatives and suggest that interest in the coterie will only continue to grow. Rosenbaum's latest contribution to Bloomsbury scholarship is—to use his own phrase which accords with Bloomsbury ideals—an eclectic work. A collection of essays which have been published over the past twenty-five years, the work has a certain magpie quality, covering a wide range of topics and drawing attention to various aspects of the group's intellectual history without arguing for a specific reading of their literary output nor presenting a systematic explanation of historical influence. Instead, Rosenbaum is interested in providing aspects—or as Wittgenstein calls them in the interesting chapter, "Wittgenstein in Bloomsbury"—hypothetical links that are intended only to draw attention to connections and perhaps to reveal new facts about the intellectual life of various members of that celebrated group. Of course, the most famous of the group is Virginia Woolf, and Rosenbaum devotes three different chapters to her in which he examines her ideas about the nature of philosophy and the novel, presents a stunningly detailed examination of the extant manuscript versions of A Room of One's Own and the two speaking engagements that served as the impetus for that work, and reflects upon how owning and operating 93 ELT 43 : 1 2000 the Hogarth Press affected her writing. Presenting hypothetical links and drawing connections remain Rosenbaum's primary objectives, and throughout these chapters he refrains from arguing a particular thesis about Woolf's work. He is concerned with intellectual influences, and though he rather convincingly outlines the impact of G. E. Moore's writings , particularly the Principia Ethica, on the Bloomsbury Group and Woolf's fiction, his refusal to draw conclusions from these comparisons is sometimes frustrating. In "Towards a Literary History of A Room of One's Own" Rosenbaum's careful scholarship regarding the two manuscripts (which really are one manuscript in two different places) of the piece that was to become A Room of One's Own bogs down in places into the kind of reading that only a true lover of bibliography would enjoy. This isn't really a criticism—for a lover of bibliography would enjoy it—and there is an element of academic mystery in the way he tracked down clues and discrepancies among the various letters, diaries, accounts of Woolf s Cambridge lectures, and the numerous versions of the work. However, one can't help feeling a bit frustrated by the narrow focus of the work as physical artifact, as seen, for instance, in observations like, "the much commented upon statement 'for we think back through our mothers if we are women' first occurs on a parenthetical remark." This is a fact that may be interesting in and of itself, but there remains a longing and an expectation that more compelling conclusions be drawn about the editorial process and the ultimate power of the ideas presented in one of Woolfs most important pieces of non-fiction. His chapter on Woolf's philosophical realism and the influence of G.E. Moore's ideas is a fascinating examination of how Woolf grappled...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1559-2715
Print ISSN
0013-8339
Pages
pp. 93-95
Launched on MUSE
2010-05-21
Open Access
No
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