"THE MOST INTENSE AND POETIC OF ALL HER WORKS": FIRST EDITION OF VIRGINIA WOOLF'S THE WAVES
WOOLF, Virginia. The Waves. London: Published by Leonard and Virginia Woolf at The Hogarth Press, 1931. Original purple cloth, original dust jacket. Housed in a custom clamshell box. $5500.
First edition of Woolf's most experimental and ambitious novel, exploring "the fluidity of human personality," a fine copy in the original dust jacket.
"Woolf was impelled by her own 'vision of life' to emphasize the fluidity of human personality rather than its fixity… The Waves is the nearest of all the novels to poetic drama, the supreme achievement of an exquisite and enriching genius" (Joan Bennett). It is "her most experimental novel in which a group of 'early Bloomsburies' with qualities amalgamated from Keynes, Strachey, Vanessa Bell and Desmond McCarthy… are halted in a series of close-ups at various stages of their lives while their thought-trains are recorded" (Connolly). "There is no attempt to differentiate the speech patterns the six friends; their individuality is presented through a highly patterned sequence of recurring phrases and images, and what we learn of their daily lives, we learn obliquely. The organization of the novel is highly formal: the main text is introduced and divided by sections of lyrical prose describing the rising and sinking of the sun over a seascape of waves and shore… It is the most intense and poetic of all her works" (Drabble, 1050). As with all of Woolf's books, the jacket design is by her sister, Vanessa Bell. Kirkpatrick A16.
Book fine, dust jacket with slightest toning to spine, faint crease to front flap, about-fine and much nicer than typically found. A beautiful copy.