Tales of Henry James: The Texts of the Stories, the Author on His Craft, Background and Criticism Short Essay - Answer Key

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1. How does Winterbourne meet Daisy Miller?

Winterbourne is drinking coffee in the garden when a young boy asks him for a lump of sugar, then helps himself to three. Daisy Miller is the boy's older sister. When she shows up to collect him, she and Winterbourne talk for the first time. Already the scene is set, for the boy, like his sister, is a forward to the point of being rude, as his sister will be forward to the point of being reckless.

2. What is the setting of 'Daisy Miller,' and why is this significant?

Daisy Miller is set in Vevey, Switzerland at first, and then in Rome, which is important because it sets American manners against stricter European manners, so that Daisy's forwardness is set against the conventional expectation of reticence in unmarried women.

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