By Elizabeth Allen
An entire size examine of James' use of the "American lady" heroine in his novels, from Daisy Miller via Isabel Archer to Milly Theale and Maggie Verver.
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Additional info for A Woman’s Place in the Novels of Henry James
And in A Foregone Conclusion he attempts to retain Florida Vervain's qualities of pride and independence in marriage by redirecting them towards her children, which can suitably be objects to her as she is now to her husband. Henry Adams runs into the same kind of problem in his two novels Esther (I 884) and Democracy (I 88o). His two heroines are endowed with an essentially American morality, one which actively criticises the society around it rather than simply maintaining the Christian standards which justify the society without revealing its contradictions.
62), and that Newman doesn't want to take his purchases too seriously: an undue solicitude for 'culture' seemed a sort of silly dawdling at the station, a proceeding properly confined to women, foreigners, and other unpractical persons (p. 62). On seeing Claire de Cintre, however, he recognises the 'culture' he has been looking for; embodied in a woman, it can be transformed for his purpose: he always came back to the feeling that when he should complete himself by taking a wife, that was the way he should like his wife to interpret him to the world (p.
Hawthorne introduces the letter as mysterious, provocative of thought, and intrinsically calling for interpretation. The letter has a tangible, physical reality- he can measure it 'precisely'. It can be recognised as having had a specific social function, though its g6 'The Scarlet Letter' 37 remoteness in time obscures that function: 'how it was to be worn, or what rank, honor, and dignity, in by-past times, were signified by it, was a riddle which ... I saw little hope of solving'. Yet beyond this physical reality and the precise historical signification of social place, the letter suggests a 'deep meaning'.
A Woman’s Place in the Novels of Henry James by Elizabeth Allen