Virginia Woolf was an English author. She was a feminist, publisher, essayist and critic. Woolf commonly acquired female authors Jane Austen and Charlotte Bronte. Woolf analyses women and their struggles as artists, their position in literary history and need for independence in her works of literature. Woolf’s short story “Angel in the House” has a deeper meaning then just a female author sharing pointers and stories on how she succeeded in her career to another woman trying to become a successful professional.
These personal encounters and struggles the author in the story discusses with the other women really expose how different women’s jobs were compared to men’s and recognizes that different approaches needed to be made by a woman in order to do well in her occupation. Women were not to be perceived more superior then men. The speaker of the story is clearly Virginia in Angel in the House. The fact that the woman in the story is a female author and continuously compares how being a professional woman is much harder than people consider it to be makes it obvious to the reader that Virginia is the speaker.
She begins by sarcastically discusses how easy being a writer is and that she is unsure why someone recommended her to give advice on being successful because her job is so easy. The author says “to show how little I deserve to be a professional women how little I know of the struggles and difficulties of such lives, I have to admit instead of spending that sum upon bread, butter, shoes, stockings or butcher bills I went out and bought a cat”(Woolf 109).
She starts off speaking about her profession in this manner because that was how men felt about being a professional author or critic or essayist. They believed that job was stress free. If this was an author who was a man though he would of never spoke down about his job like that, but it was strictly because it was a women doing it that they felt this way about the work. After talking down about being a professional writer, the author starts to tell the other women about inner struggles she has had to deal with in her profession.
Inner struggles that men were not aware of. She speaks about a phantom that she named the Angel in the house. This phantom angel is referred to by the author as a she; she was pure, charming, sympathetic and selfless. This angel in the house made the author feel guilty for having her own opinion and personality. This phantom wanted every woman to have the same morals and characteristics as her. She was what a woman was supposed to act and think like especially in a society that men ruled.
The narrator states she had to kill the angel in the house in order to become successful in her profession. This angel wanted to pluck the heart out of the authors writing, basically wanting it to be average and appropriate incase a man were to read it. Women who obeyed the angel and acted as she did were not living up to their fullest potential, allowing the men to outshine them. A woman does not discover herself until she kills that phantom, forgets what men expect and follow her own intuition no matter what.