Date of Award


Document Type

Thesis open access



First Advisor

David Rando

Second Advisor

Kathryn Vomero Santos

Third Advisor

Benjamin Stevens


Virginia Woolf's extensive education in Ancient Greek appears in her work through frequent reference to Greek tragedy, in both her novels and essays. Sophocles' Antigone was particularly influential to her feminist political thought, and by reconstructing her reading of the play, the links between Woolf’s feminism and her antifascism become apparent. In Three Guineas, her reading of Antigone comes to the forefront as an analysis not only of patriarchal psychology, but also as a manifestation of tyranny also visible in the fascist regimes of her time. Many of the ideas in Three Guineas, especially the connection between Woolf’s antifascism and her feminism, are visible in her earlier novel, Mrs. Dalloway. As a site for Classical receptions of Antigone, Mrs. Dalloway narratively explores the key aspects of the play which would go on to heavily influence her argument for an intersectional antifascism in Three Guineas. By placing Woolf’s reading of Antigone in conversation with the contemporary reading given by Judith Butler, this thesis argues that Woolf’s vision diverges significantly from the tradition of feminist Antigone criticism, and thus offers a new foundation for reading Antigone primarily as an emotionally resonant text with potential for further intersectionality.