In this study, Virginia Woolf’s novel To the Lighthouse is examined as an autobiographical novel. Virginia Woolf’s autobiographical writings are formed by her diaries, her letters and by her Moments of Being which contains five autobiographical essays yet her 1927 novel To the Lighthouse is considered to be her most autobiographical writing. Autobiographical novel is a transformation of lived experience into fictionalized discourse and frequently involves introspective work geared towards self analysis. In Woolf’s autobiographical fiction, we can see Woolf’s attempts to negotiate her relationships with her parents, herself and her environment. Virginia Woolf uses her past and her parents as models in her novel but the final characterization of Mr. and Mrs. Ramsay transcend their models. What she achieves is something universal, rather than the narrow, limited world of biography. A complete non-biographical approach To the Lighthouse might allow the reader to comprehend all the issues that are dealt with in the novel. Yet, in this case, comparing the facts of Virginia Woolf’s life and her fiction enables us to see her artistic skills at work, transforming individual experience into art.
Keywords: Autobiographical novel, experience, art, transformation.