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Traveller Elementary Student Book

When Virginia Woolf's narrator first invites readers into Jacob's room, she concludes her survey of its contents by noting that he had "all the usual textbooks" (38). Contemporary readers of Jacob's Room (1922) may have known academic publishers like George Bell & Sons, with offices in Covent Garden, selling books in Cambridge, New York, and Bombay. But Woolf's twenty-first century readers might overlook the final reference in her catalogue. Woolf's sense of a typical assortment of student books may have been based on those that filled some of the shelves in her home, from the Clarendon Press student editions of Greek plays that she translated to the texts that her brother Thoby Stephen inscribed at Clifton College and Cambridge University. These volumes, now in Virginia and Leonard Woolf's library at Washington State University, shaped the academic landscape that Jacob inhabited. Beginning with the genre of the textbook, the books in Woolf's library allow us to see that her depiction of modern life depended upon the materiality of handling, translating, and publishing of classical texts. (1)

traveller elementary student book


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