Core Curriculum : Literature Humanities

Virginia Woolf & the Hogarth Press > Introduction

When Virginia and Leonard Woolf bought type and a small handpress in March of 1917, Virginia was thirty-five and had yet to write and publish her most acclaimed novels, and Leonard was thirty-seven and just beginning his editorial work.

The Woolfs published 525 books over the next thirty years. While both had been central members of the Bloomsbury Circle, they published only a few works by Bloomsbury authors, though they published early works of several other Modernist authors, including T. S. Eliot, Edith Sitwell, and Gertrude Stein. Vita Sackville-West's The Edwardians (1930) provided their first best-seller; it sold 30,000 copies. They published political and cultural writing in addition to literature.  Among their most monumental achievements was the 23-volume Complete Works of Sigmund Freud, undertaken when James Strachey suggested they take over the list of the International Psychoanalytic Library in 1924.

They also published their own work. The inaugural publication of the Hogarth Press (Two Stories, included here) is a small pamphlet including a story each from Leonard and Virginia. The Hogarth Press was the British publisher for all of Virginia's later novels, with American editions issued by Harcourt, Brace & Company.

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