I read a bunch of essays and short pieces by Woolf for class. It seems as though she continually returned to a concept of subjective reality, of worlds created by complex workings of the human mind based on little external stimuli.
Her essay called "Modern Fiction" impressed me particularly. I loved how she described Dickens' characterisations as being childlike and she demonstrated this idea by recalling individuals she knew who died when she was a child and the resulting portraits she paints of these individuals do seem very Dickensian.
I wonder if she ever read H.P. Lovecraft. Probably not. Her autobiographical essay "A Sketch of the Past" reminded me of Lovecraft's stories of individuals trying to reconnect with the past through supernatural means.
In certain favourable moods, memories--what one has forgotten--come to the top. Now if this is so, is it not possible--I often wonder--that things we have felt with great intensity have an existence independent of our minds; are in fact still in existence? And if so, will it not be possible, in time, that some device will be invented by which we can tap them? I see it--the past--as an avenue lying behind; a long ribbon of scenes, emotions.
She suggests that adult interpretations of childhood experiences corrupt them or rather create something different from memory out of them.
Now for next week I need to read "The Dead" by James Joyce again. This class is so much cake.