I don’t think words can express how much I love Virginia Woolf. In my opinion, she was one of the greatest minds to ever walk this earth and everyone should read her work. Three Guineas is no exception.
Even though a couple of her arguments are a little dated, since (even though it sometimes doesn’t feel like it) women have more rights today than they did back then, but the majority of the book still applies to today’s society.
Basically, this book is Woolf’s response to a letter she received from a male friend in which he asked her how to prevent war. Of course, Woolf starts us off with a bang stating that, “But one does not like to leave so remarkable a letter as yours – a letter perhaps unique in the history of human correspondence, since when before has an educated man asked a woman how in her opinion war can be prevented?- unanswered.” Wow!
For here she tells the man that she has received two other letters asking for one guinea. One a women’s college building fund and the second for a society promoting the employment of professional women. While these things do not seem to have anything to do with how to prevent war, Woolf makes amazing connections between the education and professionalism of women and how these two things would actually help to prevent war.
Her arguments are well stated and convincing, perfectly outlining how these institutions and the equality of woman would actually make the world a better and more peaceful place. I’m not going to go into the specifics of her arguments here since that would be an entire paper, actually a book, but I will say that Woolf has some spot on points.
While I did enjoy “A Room of Her Own” more than this book (since the “Room” had more parallels with today’s society) I do think this book is well worth the read. I ended up giving it a 5/5. Woolf’s writing is stunning and she mastered the tongue and cheek humor that I love so much. There are so many sticky notes and markings (yes, I mark in my books) in my copy since so many of the things she says can’t be stated in a better way than she did. I highly recommend this book to any and all.