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Virginia Woolf’s A Room of One’s Own has been praised by many as being a guidebook on how to be successful in literature for woman, preaching that a woman must have both her own money and her own space in order to have a career in fiction. Although women were allowed educations during the time of the speech, they very rarely had both the factors that Woolf insists they need to have a successful career. To illustrate the difference in attention and funding shown between the two sexes, Woolf portrays two universities: Oxbridge, an all-male university, and Fernham, an all-female university. While Oxbridge is described as a bright and thriving place, Fernham seems to be dark and gloomy; however, Woolf suggests that there is something whimsical in the taboo practice of educating women. The speech begins as the narrator leads the audience throughout her day at the two universities as she tries to find an answer to why women do not often produce fiction. Woolf uses the symbolism of the two universities to both answer the narrator’s question of why women authors are not present in the publication of literature and better explain why women need their own money and space to pursue a career in fiction, this project will closely analyze Woolf’s symbolic use of the two universities, Oxbridge and Fernham, by examining the different amounts of funding that are put into the universities and the system that determines such funding.


File nameDate UploadedVisibilityFile size
19 Jul 2022
1.22 MB



  • Subject
    • English

  • Institution
    • Gainesville

  • Event location
  • Event date
    • 26 March 2021

  • Date submitted

    19 July 2022

  • Additional information
    • Acknowledgements:

      Tanya Bennett