Everything you need to understand or teach The Magnificent Ambersons by Booth Tarkington.
Underneath the broad arc of the largest social concerns addressed in The Magnificent Ambersons are a group of related themes such as the transience of social position, the nature of gracious living, and how trends in social fashions and manners help set the stage for larger cultural shifts. To see how these themes relate in the novel a brief verbal "snapshot" is needed of Midwestern life as it was just before and just after the Civil War.
The residents of the Midwest around the time of the Civil War were the sons and daughters of true pioneers, those early settlers who came almost penniless and had almost nothing save what they could make. To the pioneers thrift was a religion while spending money on art and entertainment was considered practically a sin. Their children came gradually to have a more relaxed view; for the few people like Major... View more of the The Magnificent Ambersons Summary