Cricket In Virginia Woolf

Samir Chopra recently posted an item about finding cricket in unlikely places (at a Museum of Modern Art exhibit, of all places!). But cricket springs eternal elsewhere — like pg. 15 of To The Lighthouse, by Virginia Woolf:

The gruff murmur, irregularly broken by the taking out of pipes and the putting in of pipes which had kept on assuring her, though she could not hear what was said (as she sait in the window which opened on the terrace), that the men were happily talking; this sound, which had lasted now half an hour and had taken its place soothingly in the scale of sounds pressing on top of her, such as the tap of balls upon bats, the sharp, sudden bark now and then, “How’s that? How’s that?” of the children playing cricket, had ceased; so that the monotonous fall of the waves on the beach…”

There’s much to like in this sentence (which goes on for another half-a-page), but I do have one quibble. Cricket here comes across as a noisy invasion (“the sudden bark”), whereas I enjoy Test cricket most precisely because the long periods of time and frequent intervals of nothing-is-happening mean I can let the game fade into the background, so it becomes a soothing set of sounds (to use Woolf’s words).


4 thoughts on “Cricket In Virginia Woolf

  1. Samir Chopra says:

    I’d forgotten about this one. Like a fool, I didn’t start tagging my posts till recently, so it’s going to take some work to find the posts where I noted mentions of cricket in philosophy texts.

  2. […] the original post: Cricket In Virginia Woolf « Ducking Beamers: A Cricket Blog Cricket ADD COMMENTS You can leave a response, or trackback from your own […]

  3. […] as a game set apart from modernity. Indeed, a big reason I like Test cricket is the fact that it can be boring sometimes; these quiet stretches of nothing-ness are a tribute to an ancient rhythm we don’t see much […]

  4. […] (to use Naqvi’s examples). As I said before in a review of cricket in Virginia Woolf’s To The Lighthouse: Cricket here comes across as a noisy invasion (“the sudden bark”), whereas I enjoy Test […]

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