Academic journal article Woolf Studies Annual

124 Handwritten: September 1, [1940]

Academic journal article Woolf Studies Annual

124 Handwritten: September 1, [1940]

Article excerpt

1 Sept.

The Sheffolds

Dorking

Dear Virginia, Bob has just finished reading aloud your Roger Fry to me, and I want so much to tell you what delight it has given me. I think it is a marvelous achievement, and it must often have given you difficulty, just because you were so near to him & all his life & work--the selecting & composing must have been bewildering. There is never too much, never that dreary insistence on formal detail because it is 'biographical'--one is always wanting to know more about this or that, and always one is satisfied. Then I was always conscious of a beautiful rhythm in the book--perhaps in the sense that Roger used the word?--but also more closely in the musical sense, and in a way which I have felt before in yr books. Drawing the analogy too closely is misleading, but the feeling is as of listening to a large scale symphonic movement with a quiet introduction, hinting at later themes--then the gradual statement of those themes & their development & interweaving, and recapitulation & development in other keys--it is all there, and then the quieter coda with remembrance of earlier themes. This may all sound nonsensical to you, and it probably only means that your biography, like all real works of art, convinces one by its own sense of form. …

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