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Dorothy Richardson


Dorothy Richardson was born in 1873 in Abingdon, Berkshire. She worked as a governess from the age of seventeen and then moved to London where she became friends with H G Wells and other socialists and intellectuals (She had an affair with Wells and he appears as Hypo Wilson in Pilgrimage). She became a journalist and pursued this career for most of her life while writing her long novel, Pilgrimage. She married the unsuccessful artist Alan Odle in 1917. He later died of tuberculosis. She died in 1957.

She is one of the earliest writers of stream of consciousness novels – in fact the term, though coined by William James in 1890, was first used in relation to fiction in 1918 by May Sinclair referring to Richardson’s novels. She produced the one long novel but has not had the success of other stream of consciousness writers such as Woolf and Joyce and is now mainly forgotten.

Books about Dorothy Richardson

Gloria G. Fromm: Dorothy Richardson A Biography
Gillian Hanscombe: The Art of Life: Dorothy Richardson and the Development of Feminist Consciousness
K. McLeod: Dorothy Richardson
John Cowper Powys: Dorothy M. Richardson
Jean Radford: Dorothy Richardson
John Rosenberg: Dorothy Richardson, the Genius They Forgot: a Critical Biography
Thomas F. Staley: Dorothy Richardson
Carol Watts: Dorothy Richardson
Joanne Winning: The Pilgrimage of Dorothy Richardson

Other links

Dorothy Richardson
Dorothy M. Richardson
Dorothy Richardson 1873-1957
Dorothy Richardson’s Contribution to English Literature


1905 The Long Day: The Story of a New York Working Girl
1914 The Quakers: Past and Present
1914 Gleanings from the Works of George Fox
1915-1967 Pilgrimage
[The thirteen volumes are: Pointed Roofs (1915); Backwater (1916); Honeycomb (1917); The Tunnel (1919); Interim (1919); Deadlock (1921); Revolving Lights (1923); The Trap (1925); Oberland (1927); Dawn’s Left Hand (1931); Clear Horizon (1935); Dimple Hill (1938); March Moonlight (1967)]
1930 John Austen and the Inseparables
1989 Journey to Paradise: Short Stories and Autobiographical Sketches
1995 Windows on Modernism: Selected Letters of Dorothy Richardson