Mrs. Dalloway

Superficiality in Mrs. Dalloway

'Clarissa could not be wider of the mark when she "thank(s) heaven" that "the war was over". Virtually every character we encounter is to some degree a living casualty of the class-based superficiality that led to the conflict and continues to dominate society.' Explore and discuss.

The war and its effects were far from over by June 1923; they were simply put out of mind by the upper classes in order to return to a sense of pre-war normality . Furthermore, the problems that caused the war still permeate Mrs Dalloway's society with an unquestionable resonance. These problems repeatedly manifest themselves in Mrs Dalloway and her guests and although stemming from a variety of factors, the problems for London in 1923 stem largely from superficial attitudes held in society. However, behind the superficiality of an extremely class based London there exist brief 'moments' and subtle indications that society recognises the problems and that change both has and will continue to come.

The attitude held in society before entering the war still continues to dominate Clarissa's life. Her surname, Dalloway, has implications of the word dally and 'dally' eloquently describes how she leads her...

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