Dorothy Richardson was a 20th century British writer who often worked in "stream of consciousness". After she finished school she worked as a teacher, writer and held some clerical positions Her major work was called Pilgrimage. It was a series of books or as she preferred to call them chapters published under separate titles. This included: Pointed Roofs, 1915; Backwater, 1916; Honeycomb, 1917; The Tunnel, 1919; Interim, 1919; Deadlock, 1921; Revolving Lights, 1923; The Trap, 1925; Oberland, 1927; Dawn's Left Hand, 1931; Clear Horizon, 1935; the last part, Dimple Hill, appeared under the collective title, four volumes, 1938). The heroine in Pilgrimage is Miriam Henderson who was an attractive mystical woman. The novel's new look at portraying feminine consciousness gives Richardson's work significant status in the 20th century.
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The first chapter-volume of Dorothy Richardson’s thirteen-volume novel series Pilgrimage, Pointed Roofs is a coming of age story. The protagonist is Miriam Henderson, seventeen years old. Pointed Roofs tells the tale of Miriam’s first adventure as an adult, teaching English at a finishing school in Hanover, Germany. Though the tale is simple, it is not simply told; to capture the intensity of Miriam’s seemingly mundane experiences, Richardson developed a new narrative technique labelled “stream of consciousness” by the author May Sinclair. Pointed Roofs is a compelling account of a young woman’s dawning consciousness of what it means to be independent, an individual, and a woman in the early twentieth century.
This Broadview Edition places Richardson’s inventive narrative technique in the context of early twentieth-century literary modernism, showing the “startling newness,” in May Sinclair’s words, of Richardson’s writing. Letters from Richardson to friends, publishers, and critics show the complex relationships between her work and life.About the Author:
Stephen Ross is Professor of English at the University of Victoria.
Tara Thomson is a Literature Tutor and Research Assistant in the School of Literature, Languages, and Cultures at the University of Edinburgh.
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