Une chambre à soi, Virginia Woolf


À l'école on nous a fait lire du Voltaire, du Rousseau, du Maupassant, du Zola, du Flaubert... mais pourquoi ne nous a-t-on pas fait lire du Virginia Woolf ? Pourquoi a-t-il fallu que ce soit Bourdieu avec La domination masculine puis Virginie Despentes avec King Kong Théorie qui me mettent Virginia Woolf sous les mirettes ?

Parce que tout de même c'est le genre de lecture dont on sort moins bête et mieux armé pour se confronter au journal des sports, aux soldes et à la vie en société. L'essai a pour base une réflexion sur les femmes et le roman, et traite de la condition de la femme avec une perspective historique et sociale. Virginia Woolf identifie certains éléments et effets de la domination masculine sur un ton qui n'est pas dénué d'humour et d'ironie. Le livre qui semble compiler des travaux pour des conférences est paru en 1929 en Angleterre, il faudra attendre 1951 pour qu'il soit traduit en France. À lire avant ou après Les belles images de Simone de Beauvoir et le dossier du n°6 de L'Indic...



Je ne résiste pas à la tentation de vous faire part d'un petit extrait en VO :

"But what I find deplorable, I continued, looking about the bookshelves again, is that nothing is known about women before the eighteenth century. I have no model in my mind to turn about this way and that. Here am I asking why women did not write poetry in the Elizabethan age, and I am not sure how they were educated; whether they were taught to write; whether they had sitting-rooms to themselves; how many women had children before they were twenty-one; what, in short, they did from eight in the morning till eight at night. They had no money evidently; according to Professor Trevelyan they were married whether they liked it or not before they were out of the nursery, at fifteen or sixteen very likely. It would have been extremely odd, even upon this showing, had one of them suddenly written the plays of Shakespeare, I concluded, and I thought of that old gentleman, who is dead now, but was a bishop, I think, who declared that it was impossible for any woman, past, present, or to come, to have the genius of Shakespeare. He wrote to the papers about it. He also told a lady who applied to him for infor mation that cats do not as a matter of fact go to heaven, though they have, he added, souls of a sort. How much thinking those old gentlemen used to save one! How the borders of ignorance shrank back at their approach! Cats do not go to heaven. Women cannot write the plays of Shakespeare."

Extrait de A room of one's own, by Virginia Woolf.



Commentaires