Who Said It: Fiona Apple or Virginia Woolf?

The title of this quiz—Who said it: Fiona Apple or Virginia Woolf?—says it all! Find out how well you know both feminist powerhouses by deciding if the quotation should be attributed to Fiona Apple or Virginia Woolf. Both women are bold literary and/or musical artists who probe into the deep, sometimes ugly recesses of the human mind. They also both investigate the complex place women artists have in male-dominated spaces, write compellingly about the intricacies of depression, and imbue their work with an exacting thoughtfulness and vulnerability.

Virginia Woolf famously said: “If you do not tell the truth about yourself you cannot tell it about other people.” (No, this quote is not in the quiz, sorry!) I think both Woolf and Apple take this sentiment to heart in their writing. Not only do they write about other people with a sharp, clear, unsentimental but not ungenerous eye, they also write about themselves—or women like them—in the same way.

Fiona Apple is an American singer-songwriter whose career began in the 1990s with the album Tidal. (She was only 18 when the album was released!) She continues to release revolutionary albums to this day, her latest being Fetch the Bolt Cutters. The Fiona Apple quotations are taken from her songs (not from interviews, etc.). There is at least one excerpt from each of her five studio albums, but I do admit I leaned heavier on Fetch the Bolt Cutters. 

Virginia Woolf was an English modernist author best known for novels such as Mrs. Dalloway and To The Lighthouse and the nonfiction feminist (wo)manifesto A Room of One’s Own. She also broke new literary ground with her stream of consciousness style following the minds of her fictional characters. She lived from 1882 to 1941. The Virginia Woolf quotes that appear in the quiz are all from her published works, fiction and nonfiction. But I have not pulled passages from everything she has written. Bonus points if you can tell which work the quotations come from! I have not included pieces from her published letters or diary.

Good luck on this who said it: Fiona Apple or Virginia Woolf! If you want more bookish Fiona Apple content, don’t miss this list of 5 Great Books for Fans of Fetch the Bolt Cutters. Or maybe you want to know how to go about reading Virginia Woolf’s formidable oeuvre? And hear one Rioter’s experience about learning to love Virginia Woolf, including quoting her!

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