Study Guide

To the Lighthouse Manipulation

By Virginia Woolf


Mrs. Ramsay can get people to marry because she has excellent powers of manipulation. She can make any man feel like the strongest, most manly man ever. Aside from manipulation, Mrs. Ramsay is very well attuned to people’s desires and needs, which comes in handy because her husband can be rather demanding when it comes to ego stroking.

Questions About Manipulation

  1. What role does Mrs. Ramsay’s beauty play in her ability to manipulate?
  2. Do Mrs. Ramsay’s manipulation skills help make her marriage more successful, or less successful?
  3. To what extent is Mrs. Ramsay aware of her own ability to manipulate?
  4. To what extent are Mrs. Doyle’s charges against Mrs. Ramsay accurate?

Chew on This

Minta’s marriage did not succeed because Minta lacks Mrs. Ramsay’s powers of manipulation.