Woolf in the World: A Pen and a Press of Her Own
The special Armed Services edition of The Years was made available to the Armed Forces of the United States by the Council on Books in Wartime. The Years was volume 772 in the series; 156,700 copies were printed and each cost one cent. According to the blurb on the dust jacket of the first edition of The Years, the theme of Woolf’s ninth novel “is the passing of the last fifty years, seen through the everyday life of separate individuals. The theme is presented in the concrete details of their daily life and the impact upon individuals of all the forces that mould society, from fear and love to war and politics.”
In the early 1930s, Woolf began a novel-essay, “The Pargiters,” about the nature of patriarchy in its public and private guises. She continued with the novel, re-titled The Years, which is about the political history of England from 1880 to 1937. After The Years was published in 1937, she worked on the essay portion of “The Pargiters,” which later became Three Guineas.
Virginia Woolf. The Years. London: Hogarth Press, 1937. Dust jacket designed by Vanessa Bell. Presented by Frances Hooper ’14.
Mortimer Rare Book Room, Smith College