Exploring The Art Of Queer Life Writing Through Virginia Woolf’s Orlando: A Biography

ASU Author/Contributor (non-ASU co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Leah Wingenroth (Creator)
Appalachian State University (ASU )
Web Site: https://library.appstate.edu/
Jill Ehnenn

Abstract: Virginia Woolf’s Orlando: A Biography (1928) is a fictional literary biography that archives the lived experiences of a queer, non-dying person, a novel that would understandably complicate fact, fiction, truth, life writing, theory, and empiricism within academia. However, queer theory has often been inattentive to queer life writing such as Orlando: A Biography, though the materiality of queerness is ubiquitous in the text. In many ways, Orlando: A Biography queers the very genre of life writing while simultaneously providing a model of the queer hero of the past that does not disappoint. Thus, in the following paper I will address the potential limitations, expectations, and contributions of the genre of life writing, outline contemporary developments of the genre through interdisciplinary analysis, examine why academic fields steer away from life writing, and provide a potential lens through which to frame and explore all of the aforementioned inquires in an effort provide insight into the future of queer studies by looking to what has been lived and livable in the past through Orlando: A Biography.

Additional Information

Honors Project
Wingenroth, L. (2019). Exploring The Art Of Queer Life Writing Through Virginia Woolf’s Orlando: A Biography. Unpublished Honors Thesis. Appalachian State University, Boone, NC.
Language: English
Date: 2019
Life writing, Virginia Woolf, Queer theory, Biography

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