Virginia Woolf and Social Media by Jessie Cahalin

Virginia Woolf and Social Media

‘As a woman my country is the whole world.’ Three Guineas, Woolf

My country is the world. There are no borders, no passports and no countries in the world of social media; only portals to other people’s imagination and musings.

In Three Guineas, Virginia Wolf wrote, “As a woman I have no country. As a woman I want no country. As a woman, my country is the whole world.”  And via social media, I have connected with writers from all over the world.  My endless stream of consciousness travels around the world through: tweets, my blog and Facebook posts.  People of the world open the virtual door to peek at a representation of my world, and I can walk over the threshold to visit their thoughts.

“A woman must have money and a room of her own if she is to write fiction.”

I weave in and out of articles, thoughts, pictures and moments of others. Everyone is documenting stories from their own viewpoint with unique and shared images.  I have the liberty to hop aboard someone’s narrative then return home to my own world.  Social media allows me to explore the texture of other people’s lives to search for inspiration.

A writing room of my own, connected to the world.

Like Virginia Woolf, I have a room of my own, but I have the company of a computer connected to the world.

While contemplating this brave new world, I wondered if Virginia Woolf would have engaged in social media.

Owing to the power of social media, I could knock on the virtual door of an internationally acclaimed Woolf scholar. Professor Maggie Humm wrote this in her email:

Waiting for Snapshots of Bloomsbury

“I think Virginia might well have used social media. She did write for Vogue with a photo of herself; did photograph from the age of 15 (I included over a hundred of these in my  Snapshots of Bloomsbury); spoke on the BBC several times and enjoyed seeing a range of films from The Bengal Lancer to newsreels.”

Maggie Humm’s eloquent response made me feel as it I was speaking to Virginia Woolf, in cyberspace.

Snapshots of Bloomsbury

Snapshots of Bloomsbury   showcases the photographs of Virginia Woolf and her sister, Vanessa Bell.   Humm’s commentary provides a critical insight into Woolf’s world and ‘the culture and artistry of the period’. Virginia Woolf represented her intimate world in photographs, decades before we became attached to our mobile phones. Now, this is a book I would be proud to own, but I will place it in my battered briefcase. Snapshots of Bloomsbury needs to be enjoyed in the physical rather than digital form.  However, I can’t help wondering what images and words Woolf would have chosen to share via social media.   If only, I could invite Virginia Woolf to my Chat Room.


Please see all my adventures at Handbag Adventures and my website and blog at



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