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Cloth:  $19.75

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Approaches to Teaching Woolf's To the Lighthouse

Editor(s): Beth Rigel Daugherty, Mary Beth Pringle

Pages: xiv & 211 pp.
Published: 2001
ISBN: 9780873527651

"Approaches to Teaching Woolf's To the Lighthouse will be accessible and useful to a continuum of college professors likely to teach the novel, including experienced scholars of modern literature, literature professors who don't usually read Woolf, and professors in nonliterary disciplines."
Jane Fisher, Associate Professor, Canisius College

"The essays present a wide range of interpretive and pedagogical approaches. This diversity will be stimulus to beginning instructors and a challenge to seasoned instructors, prompting us all to become more self-reflexive about what we do in the classroom."
Melba Cuddy-Keane, Associate Professor, University of Toronto at Scarborough

We are currently out of stock of the paperback edition of this title. The cloth edition will be substituted at the paperback price.

"Good, motivated, well-read students can have trouble reading To the Lighthouse," admit the editors of this volume in the Approaches to Teaching series; "not-so-well-read students may have even greater difficulty." Yet many instructors still find Woolf's fifth novel her most accessible because it grapples with issues that interest students. The essays in this collection show how teachers can tackle the often threatening question "Why are we reading this?" with thoughtful answers that make the novel come alive in the classroom.

Like other books in the series, this volume is divided into two parts. Part 1, "Materials," discusses the available editions of the novel and further reading for students, as well as reference works, bibliographies, critical works, and teaching aids. Part 2, "Approaches," gathers twenty-one essays that provide instructors with strategies for introducing students to a difficult text. The first group of these essays focuses on how to read To the Lighthouse; the volume then presents a range of critical approaches, including autobiographical, contextual, and intertextual methods. As the editors note, all the essays "aim to help undergraduates new to Woolf's novel become the readers Woolf ultimately wants: open, curious, sensitive, active."

Table of Contents

Approaches to Teaching Virginia Woolf's To the Lighthouse

Part 1: Materials
Beth Rigel Daugherty and Mary Beth Pringle



Further Reading for Students

Hours in a Library

Reference Works, Bibliographies, and Resources

Critical Reception

Backgrounds and Foregrounds

Teaching Aids

Part 2: Approaches


How Should One Read To the Lighthouse?

Period Reading Practices

Teaching To the Lighthouse as a Traditional Novel
Janis M. Paul

"For Nothing Is Simply One Thing": Knowing the World in To the Lighthouse
Mark Hussey

Returning to the Lighthouse: A Postmodern Approach
Pamela L. Caughie

Close Textual Analysis

The Language of Fabric in To the Lighthouse
Eileen Barrett

Reading Provisionally: Narrative Theory and To the Lighthouse
Mary Pinkerton

"Some Rope to Throw to the Reader": Teaching the Diverse Rhythms of To the Lighthouse
Patricia Laurence

Successful Classroom Strategies

Twenty Years to the Lighthouse: A Teaching Voyage
Annis Pratt

Reading and Writing: Helping Students Discover Meaning in To the Lighthouse
Laura Davis

Contemporary Lenses

Look Again: Reading To the Lighthouse from an Aesthetic of Likeness
Toni A. H. McNaron

What Teaching To the Lighthouse Taught Me about Reading Virginia Woolf
Louise DeSalvo

Reading To the Lighthouse as a Critique of the Imperial
Jeanette McVicker

Autobiographical Approaches

Articulating the Questions, Searching for Answers: How To the Lighthouse Can Help
Nancy Topping Bazin

From the Dark House to the Lighthouse: The Ramsays as Dysfunctional Family
Gerald T. Cobb

Transformations: Teaching To the Lighthouse with Autobiographies and Family Chronicles
Marcia McClintock Folsom

Contextual Approaches

To the Lighthouse and Painting
Susan Yunis

To the Lighthouse and the Publishing Practices of Virginia Woolf
Edward Bishop

Teaching To the Lighthouse as a Civilian War Novel
Karen L. Levenback

"I Have Had My Vision": Teaching To the Lighthouse as Künstlerroman
Bonnie Braendlin

Intertextual Approaches

Portraits of Artists by Woolf and Joyce
Susan Currier

Pear Trees beyond Eden: Women's Knowing Reconfigured in Woolf's To the Lighthouse and Hurston's Their Eyes Were Watching God
Annette Oxindine

Compulsory Heterosexuality and the Lesbian Continuum in To the Lighthouse: A Women’s Studies Approach
Vara Neverow

Works Cited


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