Graduation Year

Spring 2014

Document Type

Campus Only Senior Thesis



Reader 1

Aaron Matz

Reader 2

Audrey Bilger

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© 2014 Amy M. Borsuk


This thesis is a three part examination of the role of perceptions of gender in the developing category of mental illness and disability during the inter-war period in England using Virginia Woolf's literature and essays, most prominently Mrs. Dalloway and her personal essay, "A Sketch of the Past." These texts provide a foundation for analyzing how disability can be represented in literature in a way that gives disabled characters a voice and simultaneously criticizes the ways in which perceptions of normalcy are defined and reinforced through literary forms. The thesis also responds to contemporary feminist scholarship that has evaluated Woolf's disabled characters in problematic methods that discount the significance of disability.

This thesis is restricted to the Claremont Colleges current faculty, students, and staff.