The Age Of Innocence By Edith Wharton

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The Age of Innocence written by the late Edith Wharton is a play on the early stages of America in the life of the most well bred and noble Americans. The Age of Innocence was written so specifically for one time in American History that it fails at transcending over multiple generations. Though this work is written with a level of expertise, spirit and play on a forbidden taboo of loving someone you're not meant to. The book continuously fell short for me with its slow character building, lack of real climax, and it's inability to take the reader to a whole to new world, that would in turn showcase the birth of America along with its highest class. For that, I feel that this book should not have been chosen for a Pulitzer Prize winner.

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Even with this consideration I had a hard time understanding the book and had to instead take bits and pieces in order to grasp the book especially when words or snippets such as “conveyance’ pg.242, “celebrated their untidy rites” pg.255, “conciliatory” pg.255 and, “Mulatto” pg.265 were used. The 1870’s most definitely did not have any type of diversity or racial integration and the word black is used forty times in the whole book but never in reference to a black person. This is another key point where this book did not reach the requirements. “the American novel published during the year which shall best present the whole atmosphere of American life and the highest standard of American manners and manhood.” This is not a whole representation of America even putting aside the lack of racial integration the book speaks nothing of the dirt poor or even of the rest of America that live different lives than them. The book was so stuck in these little ideas that it never encompassed a whole America but instead a small little …show more content…

This is understandable in the sense that the book is supposed to be the semi-autobiography of Edith Wharton so of course, it wouldn't be able to fully describe a whole American life but that does not change the rules of the Pulitzer Prize and it should not have. The type of business high-class New Yorker’s dealt in in the 1870’s were along the lines of Wall Street, banking, and shipment from ports to the rest of the country and out of the world. There would most definitely be similarities between a high-class person from California or that of High class in Texas however the social construct would be different because they are not one and the same place. So The Age of Innocence would fall behind there as well in being a real Pulitzer Prize

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