On Being Ill - by Virginia Woolf

On Being Ill - by Virginia Woolf Visual Arts Famous People Fiction

This cover depicts the first edition of Virginia Woolf's essay, "On Being Ill."  Vanessa Stephen Bell - Virginia's sister - created the cover illustration.

In this essay, Virginia writes these words:

Considering how common illness is, how tremendous the spiritual change that it brings, how astonishing, when the lights of health go down, the undiscovered countries that are then disclosed, what wastes and deserts of the soul a slight attack of influenza brings to light...it becomes strange indeed that illness has not taken its place with love, battle, and jealousy among the prime themes of literature. Novels, one would have thought, would have been devoted to influenza; epic poems to typhoid; odes to pneumonia, lyrics to toothache. But no; ... literature does its best to maintain that its concern is with the mind; that the body is a sheet of plain glass through which the soul looks straight and clear.

One can sense the sadness in the words of a writer who endured debilitating headaches.

Click on the image for a better view.

Media Credits

Book-cover image online, courtesy University of Delaware.


To cite this story (For MLA citation guidance see easybib or OWL ):

"On Being Ill - by Virginia Woolf" AwesomeStories.com. Oct 07, 2013. Nov 21, 2019.
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