Sunday, October 26, 2008

Works Cited

Works Cited
"Leonard Woolf." The Arkansas School for Mathematics, Sciences and The Arts. 2007. 28 Sept. 2008 .

"Luftwaffe." Spartacus Educational. 2008. 28 Sept. 2008 .

"MSO: Meryl Streep Online." MSO: Meryl Streep Online. 2008. Creative Artists Agency. 20 Oct. 2008 .

"Overview- HIV/AIDS." 25 Sept. 2008. US Dept. of Health and Human Services. 20 Oct. 2008 .

"Vanessa Bell." The Arkansas School for Mathematics, Sciences and The Arts. 2007. 28 Sept. 2008 .

Virginia and Richard

"There was one that looked a bit like a black, electrified jellyfish. They were singing, just now, in a foreign language. I believe it may have been Greek. Archaic Greek." (pg 59)

"She might see it while walking with Leonard in the square . . . randomly spiked, fluid but whole, like a jellyfish . . . A flock of sparrows outside her window once sang, unmistakably, in Greek." (pg 70-71)

Over the course of ten pages or so, Cunningham chooses to give Virginia and Richard identical symptoms of illness. The common ailment aids in the comparison between these two characters-- they are both very creative, artistic people but are also the two characters in the novel that commit suicide. It speaks volumes about how sensitive they are and how deeply they feel, just like the way the church choir director of Thorton Wilder's famous play Our Town kills himself because he simply feels too much.

Clarissa and Richard vs. Clarissa and Sally

"...they had kissed or not kissed, they had certainly argued..." (pg. 52)

In this sentence, Cunningham again brings shows the contrast between the relationship Clarissa once had with Richard (and may have had for the rest of her life) and the relationship she now has with Sally. In this sentence, Cunningham makes it clear that the argument was the piece that mattered. Cunningham does not make it clear whether she and Richard kissed or not because the argument is the important part. Clarissa and Richard's relationship was more volatile and uncertain, but Clarissa thinks on how she felt much more alive during her relationship with Richard. On the other side of things, her relationship with Sally is a good relationship, but it makes Clarissa feel old and boring. There is no spark the way there would have been with Richard and this is seen as a bad thing. Cunningham makes it very clear that liveliness and true feeling should outweigh comfort and stability.

Unnatural Life

"Their lawn, extravagantly watered, is a brilliant, almost unearthly green." (pg. 47)

Laura's lawn represents the way she feels about her actual life. Everything seems perfect from the outside-- she's married to a nice man, has a nice son with another one on the way, her home is nice and her life is simple. However, Laura feels like an outsider in her own life. Everything she doesn't feels fake and unnatural to her. Everything is too tended to, much like the lawn, and therefore not genuine or true.

Loss of Identity

"So now she is Laura Brown. Laura Zielski, the solitary girl, the incessant reader, is gone, and here in her place is Laura Brown." (pg. 40)

Loss of identity plays in important role in The Hours. Laura is not the only character to feel that she is losing who she is. Virginia feels herself slipping away while recovering from her "illness" in the country. Her illness has caused her to feel like a completelt different person, not Virginia anymore. Clarissa also feels as though she may not know herself anymore because at one point in her life, she sacrificed someone she might have been for a more safe and stable life. Instead of staying with Richard and living a life full of "living", she decided on Sally and an easy relationship that needed less work. She now looks back on the choice and wonders if she sacrificed who she really was for simpler life.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008


"On the tabletop, a dozen white roses offer their... beauty."

Flowers show up time and time again in The Hours and Mrs. Dalloway. In keeping with the theme of time, age and beauty, flowers are a disposable representation of beauty that fades quickly. There is nothing lasting about a flower's beauty. Its sentiment has also become shallow and unfeeling. Spouses often buy their significant others flowers to show appreciation and even love, but in today's society, they have become a trite symbol of love that has no real depth. In this scene, Lauran's husband Dan has bought her a bouquet of white roses. Laura married Dan because she felt it was the right thing to do but has no real love for him. Dan may love Laura, but since he doesn't know her, he really only loves who he thinks she is.

The Importance of a Day

"...and knew it was going to be a difficult day." (pg. 38)

The idea of a day and the importance a single day can play in a simple life. Laura Brown predicts that it will be a "difficult day" and she is right. Over the course of one day, Laura debates suicide and essentially decides to leave her family because she knows that if she stays with them, she won't survive. This day in her life is pivotal, much like the three other days that relate to hers (Virginia Woolf's one day, Clarissa Vaughn's day and Clarissa Dalloway's day), important things happen within one day because really, one day is simply a life lived within twenty four hours.