Now, Woolf calls her fictional bastion of male privilege Oxbridge, so I’ll call mine Yarvard. Even though she cannot attend Yarvard because she is a woman, Judith cheerfully applies for admission at, let’s call it, Smithcliff, a prestigious women’s college. She is denied admission on the grounds that the dorms and classrooms can’t accommodate wheelchairs, that her speech pattern would interfere with her elocution lessons, and that her presence would upset the other students. There is also the suggestion that she is not good marriage material for the men at the elite college to which Smithcliff is a bride-supplying “sister school.” The letter inquires as to why she hasn’t been institutionalized.
When she goes to the administration building to protest the decision, she can’t get up the flight of marble steps on the Greek Revival building. This edifice was designed to evoke a connection to the Classical world, which practiced infanticide of disabled newborns.
Alex Proimos from Sydney, Australia with CCLicense (Image has been Cropped)