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Burning Mrs. Southworth: True Womanhood and the Intertext of Ellen Glasgow's Virginia

Burning Mrs. Southworth: True Womanhood and the Intertext of Ellen Glasgow's Virginia Burning Mrs. Southworth: True Womanhood and the Intertext of Ellen Glasgow’s Virginia by Paul Christian Jones Near the beginning of the novel Virginia, Ellen Glasgow’s 1913 study of the southern lady, the reader is presented with an intriguing scene wherein young Susan Treadwell tells her friends, including the novel’s title character Virginia Pendleton, of the arrival of her cousin Oliver, who has been in Europe for his studies and has now come to stay with the Treadwell family in the small Virginia town of Dinwiddie. At twenty-two, Oliver is said to have his head “full of all kinds of new ideas he picked up somewhere abroad” (9). Among these ideas is his commitment to pursu- ing a literary career, specifi cally as a playwright, rather than accepting a position from his uncle in the family bank. A fi rm believer in the power of literature, Oliver is convinced that as a writer he can make a difference in the world, and “he talks for hours about art and its service to humanity” (18). Susan tells her friends that Oliver is particularly disappointed in the Treadwell family library and “laughs at every book he sees in the house” (19). He http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png The Southern Literary Journal University of North Carolina Press

Burning Mrs. Southworth: True Womanhood and the Intertext of Ellen Glasgow's Virginia

The Southern Literary Journal , Volume 37 (1) – Jan 11, 2005

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Publisher
University of North Carolina Press
Copyright
Copyright © 2004 the Southern Literary Journal and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Department of English.
ISSN
1534-1461

Abstract

Burning Mrs. Southworth: True Womanhood and the Intertext of Ellen Glasgow’s Virginia by Paul Christian Jones Near the beginning of the novel Virginia, Ellen Glasgow’s 1913 study of the southern lady, the reader is presented with an intriguing scene wherein young Susan Treadwell tells her friends, including the novel’s title character Virginia Pendleton, of the arrival of her cousin Oliver, who has been in Europe for his studies and has now come to stay with the Treadwell family in the small Virginia town of Dinwiddie. At twenty-two, Oliver is said to have his head “full of all kinds of new ideas he picked up somewhere abroad” (9). Among these ideas is his commitment to pursu- ing a literary career, specifi cally as a playwright, rather than accepting a position from his uncle in the family bank. A fi rm believer in the power of literature, Oliver is convinced that as a writer he can make a difference in the world, and “he talks for hours about art and its service to humanity” (18). Susan tells her friends that Oliver is particularly disappointed in the Treadwell family library and “laughs at every book he sees in the house” (19). He

Journal

The Southern Literary JournalUniversity of North Carolina Press

Published: Jan 11, 2005

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