A Room of One's Own, Woolf's blazing polemic on female creativity, the role of the writer, and the silent fate of Shakespeare's imaginary sister, remains a powerful reminder of a woman's need for financial independence and intellectual freedom.
Virginia Woolf, born in 1882, was the major novelist at the heart of the inter-war Bloomsbury Group. Her early novels include The Voyage Out, Night and Day and Jacob's Room. Between 1925 and 1931 she produced her finest masterpieces, including Mrs Dalloway, To the Lighthouse, Orlando and the experimental The Waves. Her later novels include The Years and Between the Acts, and she also maintained an astonishing output of literary criticism, journalism and biography, including the passionate feminist essay A Room of One's Own. Suffering from depression, she drowned herself in the River Ouse in 1941.