In a Room of One's Own, Woolf doesn't believe poems are superior to novels but rather argues that, to reach their full potential and articulate what it is to be a woman, women need to make every genre their own and not allow men to dictate to them how they should write. In fact, Woolf sees the novel, because it is a newer form, as better adapted to women's writing than poetry. Speaking of Jane Austen, Woolf writes:
The novel alone was young enough to be soft in her hands—another reason, perhaps, why she wrote novels.
Woolf argues that women in past generations have done better with novels than poems, suggesting that it is easier for a woman to smooth over her "incandescent" anger in a novel (she particularly admires Jane Austen for her ability never to burst out in fury) and the circumstances of a woman's life made novel writing more natural. Women, lacking...
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