The Painted Veil Short Essay - Answer Key

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1. What was different about Maugham's writing process on The Painted Veil compared to his other works?

Maugham mentions that this is the only novel he has written in which he started with an idea of the story rather than thinking of a specific character first.

2. In Chapter 1, what tools does Charlie use to reassure Kitty and why are they effective?

Charlie consciously smiles, and uses a gentle persuasive tone he knows appeals to Kitty, he also kisses her and dismisses the whole thing as an optical illusion. Kitty is easily reassured by Charlie because she adores him so much that his attention to her makes her momentarily forget her anxiety.

3. How many reasons does Charlie give for a potentially calm reaction from Walter upon finding out about their rendezvous?

Charlie sees Walter as being too shy to make a scene. He thinks that Walter's logical side would persuade that causing a scandal would only cause him pain.

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