Thursday, October 27, 2011

Yes, Santa Claus, there is a Virginia

"...and I thought of that old gentleman, who is dead now, but was a bishop, I think, who declared that it was impossible for any woman, past, present, or to come, to have the genius of Shakespeare. He wrote to the papers about it. He also told a lady who applied to him for information that cats do not as a matter of fact go to heaven, though they have, he added, souls of a sort. How much thinking those old gentlemen used to save one! How the borders of ignorance shrank back at their approach! Cats do not go to heaven. Women cannot write the plays of Shakespeare."

Chapter 3, A room of one's own, by Virginia Woolf

This quote is about as much as I've read of Virginia Woolf, but it cracks me up. I imagine her saying it in a way that would have made ladies laugh behind their hands. I imagine her saying it in a way that the insult would have flown right over the heads of any men present.