They did nothing but talk, talk, talk, eat, eat, eat. It was the women’s fault – Explain

Shape Shape

To the Lighthouse is a notable literary work by Virginia Woolf. A complete discussion of this literary work is given, which will help you enhance your literary skills and prepare for the exam. Read the main text, key info, Summary, Themes, Characters, Literary Devices, Quotations, Notes, to various questions of To the Lighthouse.


They did nothing but talk, talk, talk, eat, eat, eat. It was the women’s fault. Women made civilization impossible with all their charm, all their silliness.

The quote is derived from Virginia Woolf’s (1882-1941) novel “To the Lighthouse,”. It reflects the author’s exploration of gender roles and societal expectations during the early 20th century. 

In quotes, “talk, talk, talk” describes women’s engagement in endless conversations. It describes the societal norm of women like Mrs. Ramsay, who expect to maintain polite conversation.

It illustrates women pressured to be friendly and pleasant. The phrase “eat, eat, eat” emphasizes the role of women as caretakers and providers in the domestic sphere. They are traditionally responsible for meal preparation, ensuring their families are well-fed.

Moreover, the phrase “It was the women’s fault” describes a negative attitude toward women. It tells about the meaningless activities of women, consciously or unknowingly. Women perform some activities unsuitable for them to maintain their prestige. Besides, Woolf’s reference to “charm” and “silliness” reflects the qualities of women during her time. Everybody expects women to be charming and polite. The word “silliness” refers to the superficiality imposed on women. It means Women are discouraged from engaging in meaningful activities.

In short, the quote emphasizes the societal constraints and expectations placed on women in the early 20th century. It indicates the silent roles assigned to them in society. Virginia Woolf’s statement sheds light on women’s challenges in a patriarchal society.