Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Haptic ModernismTouch and the Tactile in Modernist Writing$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Abbie Garrington

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780748641741

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2013

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748641741.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM EDINBURGH SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.edinburgh.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Edinburgh University Press, 2019. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ESO for personal use.date: 23 October 2019

Virginia Woolf, Hapticity and the Human Hand

Virginia Woolf, Hapticity and the Human Hand

Chapter:
(p.115) Chapter 3 Virginia Woolf, Hapticity and the Human Hand
Source:
Haptic Modernism
Author(s):

Abbie Garrington

Publisher:
Edinburgh University Press
DOI:10.3366/edinburgh/9780748641741.003.0004

This chapter argues that, despite her avowed interest in the exploration of the mind, Virginia Woolf is in several important ways a bodily writer. Beginning with Woolf’s hand reading by Charlotte (Lotte) Wolff, the chapter identifies an abiding fascination amongst Woolf’s social circle with the many meanings of the human hand – its scored palm, its finger shapes and its gestures. Offering a detailed reading of hand-engagement in Woolf’s novel The Years (1937), the chapter sheds light on that oft-neglected book, the conventional form of which belies a cutting-edge appreciation of palmistry and chirology or hand reading. Ultimately, the chapter argues that Woolf’s aim in The Years is to engage with Walter Pater’s theorisation of the moment, as well as with Horace’s notion of carpe diem, or the injunction to ‘seize the day’. The latter underscores Woolf’s repeated attending to the grasping hand as an attempt to halt time. Yet it also functions as a kind of modernist creed, a provocation to other writers to consider literature as a means of stilling time’s flow.

Keywords:   Hand, Palmistry, Chirology, Gesture, Carpe diem, Charlotte Wolff, Virginia Woolf, Walter Pater, Horace

Edinburgh Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.