To the Lighthouse Chapters 5-8 Questions and Answers

Virginia Woolf

Chapters 5-8 Questions and Answers

Study Questions
1. Who is Mrs. Ramsay knitting for?

2. How does Mrs. Ramsay feel about the sea-side house?

3. Why does she speak sharply to her son?

4. How does Mr. Bankes feel about Mrs. Ramsay?

5. How does James feel about his parents?

6. Why does Mr. Ramsay say “Damn you” to Mrs. Ramsay?

7. What are Mr. Ramsay’s thoughts as he paces through the garden?

8. How does Mr. Carmichael feel about Mrs. Ramsay?

9. Why is Mrs. Ramsay hurt by Mr. Carmichael’s reaction to her?

10. What are Mr. Ramsay’s thoughts at the end of this section?

Answers
1. Mrs. Ramsay is knitting a stocking for the Lighthouse keeper’s son who has a tuberculous hip.

2. Mrs. Ramsay feels the house is shabby. She is frustrated by trying to keep the sea-dampness out of the house, by trying to get the family to cooperate to maintain the house.

3. She speaks sharply to James because she has been thinking about the death of Marie’s father. She feels hopeless in the face of death.

4. Mr. Bankes is awed by Mrs. Ramsay’s beauty. He compares her to a Greek goddess.

5. James feels rage towards his father and adoration of his mother.

6. Mr. Ramsay is frustrated by Mrs. Ramsay’s unwillingness to accept the fact the weather will not permit a trip to the Lighthouse. He feels that she, and all women, tell lies.

7. Mr. Ramsay thinks about his intellectual ability and dramatizes passages from poetry.

8. Mr. Carmichael is indifferent to Mrs. Ramsay’s ministrations. He is uncomfortable with her.

9. Mrs. Ramsay feels that people are attracted to her and she can’t understand why Mr. Carmichael seems to reject her. It makes her wonder if he sees something that others overlook.

10. Mr. Ramsay looks at the sea and recognizes that, after all, human knowledge is very limited. It is his special gift to be able to see this so clearly.