Literature Study GuidesTo The LighthouseThe Window Chapter 2 Summary

To the Lighthouse | Study Guide

Virginia Woolf

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To the Lighthouse | The Window, Chapter 2 | Summary



From the window, an unidentified man tells James with "some semblance of geniality" there will be no trips to the lighthouse the next day. Mrs. Ramsay is annoyed he continues to disappoint James. She thinks of him as an "odious little man" and wonders, "Why go on saying that?"


Because Mrs. Ramsay calls the unidentified man "odious," readers assume it is Tansley as she calls his harping on and upsetting her youngest child "odious" in the previous chapter. Although his changed nature—attempted "geniality"—displays his growing feelings for Mrs. Ramsay, his nature also damages the progress they made on their walk, developing the awkwardness of his character as well as Mrs. Ramsay's inaccessibility.

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