Virginia Woolf and Christian Culture

Research output: Book/ReportBookpeer-review


This wide-ranging study demonstrates that Woolf, despite her agnostic upbringing, was profoundly interested in, and knowledgeable about, Christianity as a faith and a socio-political movement. Jane de Gay provides a strongly contextual approach, first revealing the extent of the Christian influences on Woolf’s upbringing, including an analysis of the far-reaching influence of the Clapham Sect, and then drawing attention to the importance of Christianity among Woolf’s friends and associates. It shows that Woolf’s awareness of the ongoing influence of Christian ideas and institutions informed her feminist critique of society in Three Guineas. The book sheds new light on works including Mrs Dalloway, To the Lighthouse and The Waves by revealing her fascination with the clergy, the Madonna, churches and cathedrals; her interest in the Bible as artefact and literary text; and her wrestling with questions about salvation and the nature of God.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationEdinburgh
PublisherEdinburgh University Press
Number of pages256
ISBN (Electronic)9781474415651, 9781474415644
ISBN (Print)9781474415637
Publication statusPublished - 7 Jun 2018


  • Modernism
  • Christianity
  • Woolf
  • Feminist Theologies


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