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Mrs. Dalloway an Explication
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| Words: 1221 | Submitted: 30-Apr-2011
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DescriptionInside analysis of mrs. dalloway
The Green Dress
Virginia Woolf’s “Mrs. Dalloway” is the story of one day in a woman’s life. Clarissa Dalloway is a woman of extraordinary talent as a homemaker, housewife, and a hostess. She has the talent to bring people together; yet in one scene, while she mends her dress, she reveals that there is something missing in her perfect life. While Mrs. Dalloway prepares her costume for the masquerade, she begins to have difficulty in reconciling her inner most self with her exterior self. Mrs. Dalloway hides her soul and passion within her green dress, accepting the loss of youth, love, and passion.
Woolf begins the scene with Mrs. Dalloway looking in her wardrobe deciding which dress to choose. As she looks at the beautiful dresses inside of her wardrobe, she only chooses one: a beautiful green dress that someone trod on, tore, while the color which shone in the artificial light, appeared faded once it was out in the sun. The green dress represents Mrs. Dalloway in her youth and how time has taken its toll on both Dalloway and on the dress. According to Woolf, the green dress has been “…torn. Some one had trod on the skirt…by artificial light the green shone, but lost its colour now in the sun” (37). The dress description can be view on Mrs. Dalloway’s own youth and mortality. As Mrs. Dalloway ages, her skin, like the dress, begins to fade and wrinkle with age and weariness. Mrs. Dalloway, as a hostess and as a housewife, shines within her own dormitory, however once outside, her skin fades and she only blends in with society instead of radiating with her early youth and passion. When Dalloway was young, she was noticeably beautiful, she shone with the sun with her ideas and freedom. Mrs. Dalloway does recognize passion for she has felt it one upon gazing at Sally Seton: “If it were now to die ‘twere now to be most happy,” thought Mrs. Dalloway as she came down in her summer white frock (35). One simple moment and one simple hour became one unforgettable passion Mrs. Dalloway could never forget. The color green plays a significant color, for Woolf could have used any color for Mrs. Dalloway to choose, however she chooses the color green. The color “green” represents a desire or a yearning for something. Mrs. Dalloway is going to wear the green dress because it represents her yearning for that one time passion she had lost many years ago. Dalloway chooses the color green because it express the loss of her self – identity and youth. However, Mrs. Dalloway will not allow her servant ...
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