Analysis Of Edith Wharton's The Age Of Innocence

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Edith Wharton is an important, though neglected novelist in the history of American literature. Her novels study the status of the women and explore their relationship with men in a male dominated society. Again and again she presents the state of exceptional, rising, ‘New Woman’ of the turn of the century to break out of her compressible role and attempting a venture rebellion. The Age of Innocence is on the theme that deals ironically with the affluent social world of New York. The novel has a theme of entrapment and the struggle of the intruder, both to maintain an adult sense of self in a childish society and to rescue a trapped male from that society. The novel analyses the impact of misery and pain when society establishes the false properties’ of “good” and “bad” in dealing with its women. The Age of Innocence was set in the vanished New York of her youth, which she carefully reconstructed like the recovered fragment of illusion in the old Metropolitan Museum. It had quite gone by this time, and had been almost transformed by social and technological changes like electric lighting and long-distance telephoning, when the novel ends in about 1905. However many other things she is doing, the author never ceases to be aware that she is describing the manners and morals of a small closed society. The title refers to the New York of the 1870’s in the girlhood of Edith Wharton and gives to the book the flavor of historical novel, as is pointed out by many critics. The

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