Interview with Professor Yang Lixin

Translating Virginia Woolf British Literature in China today Chinese books we should read   How did you first become interested in the Bloomsbury group?   Several years ago, when I began to collect materials for a research project on ‘Virginia Woolf’s Translation and Reception in China’, I read work by other important members of the Bloomsbury group such as E.M. Forster, Roger Fry, Vanessa Bell, Vita Sackville-West and Julian …

Turning a novel into a play

Sebastian Faulks once remarked that transposing a novel to another medium is like trying to turn a painting into sculpture. It’s an image I’ve been thinking about this summer as I’ve watched Vanessa and Virginia transform into a stage play. What first struck me on reading Elizabeth Wright’s script was the drastic scissoring away of words. Anything not absolutely essential …

Writing with the door closed, editing with it open

After a talk to the Arts Society at Newnham College in Cambridge last night I had an interesting discussion about the differences between literary criticism and creative writing. The talk was to launch a new journal Women and the Arts, celebrating Virginia Woolf’s lecture to the Society in 1928. Woolf later reworked her lecture as her seminal essay A Room …

Weaving

Earlier this month I visited the Gobelins in Paris, where tapestries and carpets are still made by hand using techniques that have hardly changed over centuries. After the history-for-tourists preamble by our guide we were taken on a tour of the workshops. There was something mesmeric about the row of weavers working with only the simplest of tools: a shuttle …