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  1. HaraKiriBlade's Avatar
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    #1

    the great envolope of consciousness?

    Again, I'm still dawdling at the introduction part of the book I'm reading, Catch-22. I have a quesiton about this one sentence, but I fear you may have difficult time understanding it without the entire context, so I'm going to write out the entire paragraph from which the sentence came. (This very sentence might be too wordy, and if you can simplify it without changing the meaning I'd appreciate the correction)

    ...But no less important were the novels which, without representing the war directly, showed the profound changes in consciousness, mores and values it had generated. Nearly all the great modernist works showed the power of its effect. The delicate, decadent, belle epoque world of Marcel Proust's A la recherche de temps perdu is transformed by the conflict; the anxious sickness of bourgeois society in Tohmas Mann's The Magin Mountain leads us onward down the mountain and into the European battlefield; the great envelope of consciousness in Virginia Woolf's fiction is repeatedly broken open by the shattering impact of war.
    I don't know if 'the great envelope of consciousness' is a general term or a specific reference to Virginia Woolf's works, which I'm not terribly familiar with.
    And why singlular noun in mentioning Virginia Wolf's 'fiction'? Did she write only one fiction throughout her life? Or is there a grammatical reason for this?

    Any input would be very much appreciated.
    Last edited by HaraKiriBlade; 19-Jan-2006 at 23:41.

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    #2

    Re: the great envolope of consciousness?

    It's a quote- here's a fuller version:
    Life is not a series of gig lamps symmetrically arranged; life is a luminous halo, a semi-transparent envelope surrounding us from the beginning of consciousness to the end. (From the Common Reader)
    Virginia Woolf wrote a number of books- fiction is used to maean the body of her writing that was fiction- she also wrote non-fiction like 'A Room of One's Own'.

  2. HaraKiriBlade's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: the great envolope of consciousness?

    First of all, thank you very much for the quote, Tdol.
    Now at least I know what the sentence is referring to.

    However, I've been trying to guess what the quote impiles, without success.
    Would you provide me with some insights?

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    #4

    Re: the great envolope of consciousness?

    I'm not the number one fan of Virginia Woolf, b ut I think she's saying that life is something amorphous that surrounds us, not a series of steps, and that it begins the moment we're born, even though we may not consciously be able to recall that, so to look at our lives as a series of steps would be to misunderstand it.

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