The Waves | Study Guide

Virginia Woolf

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Course Hero. "The Waves Study Guide." Course Hero. 30 Aug. 2019. Web. 28 Sep. 2020. <https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-Waves/>.

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Course Hero. (2019, August 30). The Waves Study Guide. In Course Hero. Retrieved September 28, 2020, from https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-Waves/

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Course Hero. "The Waves Study Guide." August 30, 2019. Accessed September 28, 2020. https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-Waves/.

Footnote

Course Hero, "The Waves Study Guide," August 30, 2019, accessed September 28, 2020, https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-Waves/.

Overview

Author

Virginia Woolf

Year Published

1931

Type

Novel

Genre

Fiction

Perspective and Narrator

Each of the nine chapters of The Waves begins from the perspective of a third-person omniscient narrator. This objective narration, set off in italicized type, describes the different positions of the sun in the sky during one day. There are six main characters in The Waves, and each character serves as a first-person narrator. Through soliloquies, each character takes a turn directly speaking to the reader, revealing his or her own thoughts about events and characters in the story.

Tense

In The Waves, the first-person soliloquies are told in the present tense, while the introductory interludes are relayed in the past tense.

About the Title

In the novel The Waves, waves offer symbolic opportunities to compare the chaotic rhythms of human lives to those of the sea. Virginia Woolf's working title for the text was The Moths. In choosing The Waves instead, she directs a focus on the vital waves of human emotion at the center of each chapter rather than on the human fragility that the working title suggests.

Summary

This study guide for Virginia Woolf's The Waves offers summary and analysis on themes, symbols, and other literary devices found in the text. Explore Course Hero's library of literature materials, including documents and Q&A pairs.

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