[SOLD OUT!] Reading Virginia Woolf with Dr. Sean Hughes | Virtual Course

Date / Time

  • April 24, 2024
    6:00 pm - 7:30 pm



  • Tuition for this course is $200. Members receive exclusive discounts on our programs and courses. Not a member? Learn more.
  • This course is limited to participants who are 18 years of age or older.
  • Please check your spam folder for your email confirmation. If you have questions, please call (215) 732-1600 or email [email protected].
  • Registration opens for Delancey Society on December 6, for Rosenbach members on December 14, and for the general public on January 3 

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Virginia Woolf once asserted that “on or about December 1910 human character changed.” It’s a joke, but it’s a serious joke. With ironic overstatement, Woolf is identifying one of her central preoccupations. Surely there was something different about being a person in 1924, as opposed to one in 1896. But if we are creatures of our times, can we hope to sort out the subtle forces that influence our character? And how can a writer represent those fleeting moments when we were impressionable – before we hardened into who we are now?   

In this course, we’ll explore Woolf’s wisdom about human character and history while enjoying her glorious prose. We’ll read A Room of One’s Own, a selection of her shorter writings, and To the Lighthouse, one of the greatest novels of the twentieth century. Each session will include some relevant background, but our discussions will be guided by the interests of participants. Likely topics will include memory, gender, literary history, food, psychology, power, sexuality, family, artistic ambition, and loss. 

 Virginia Woolf syllabus

About the instructor 

Sean Hughes is a Philly-based writer and editor who has taught at Bryn Mawr College and Rutgers University – New Brunswick, where he completed a Ph.D. in English Literature in 2020. His research interests include 19thcentury literature, the relationship between literature and philosophy, historicism, and poetics. His article “George Eliot, Typology, and the Moral Psychology of Historicism” was published in the Spring 2022 issue of English Literary History. In addition to his academic work, he is also a poetry editor and co-creator of the webcomic Wally and the Witches. He taught George Eliot’s Middlemarch for the Rosenbach in 2023.