Monday, November 06, 2006

"Flush" - Virginia Woolf

As some kind of respite from the hardcore Modernist texts I've been downing for the MA, I thought I'd compromise with Virginia Woolf's novella-sized biography of Elizabeth Barrett Browning's pet Spaniel, Flush. (At this point I'd like to apologise for not having read the beautiful Persephone reprint but merely a library copy - ho hum).

"Flush" is by the far the most readable of the Woolf texts that I've read and seems to be intended as a break for her - and she must surely have had fun researching the pup's life through old letters and poems.

A dog's is an interesting point of view to write from since Flush never claims to understand English, however intuitive he becomes to his mistress. And this book also gives Woolf the chance to gently mock the lives of the Victorian women poets (such as Barrett Browning). "Flush" examines class and gender in Victorian era London by putting a new spin on it. Hugely enjoyable (compared to Wool'f s other texts), and I raced through the 100 or so pages in two gulps.

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