The Custom of the Country Study Questions & Topics for Discussion

This Study Guide consists of approximately 12 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Custom of the Country.
This section contains 522 words
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The Custom of the Country lacks two things that are normally considered prerequisites for a popular work of fiction: a sympathetic leading character whom a reader may identify with, and a clear moral center of consciousness by which the actions of the leading characters may be judged. The absence of these two elements may account for why the novel is a puzzling experience for many readers who bring certain expectations to it as a work of realistic fiction. These two missing elements may also account for the novel's success. Wharton is tackling much of the same territory as she did in The House of Mirth (1905; see separate entry), but in this novel she does not have a heroine who is ill-suited to a transitional society that has lost its moral center.

Rather she has an ambitious, amoral, conniving, emotionally unresponsive female protagonist who is oblivious to the moral...

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This section contains 522 words
(approx. 2 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy The Custom of the Country Short Guide
Copyrights
Beacham's Encyclopedia of Popular Fiction and Beacham's Guide to Literature for Young Adults
The Custom of the Country from Beacham's Encyclopedia of Popular Fiction and Beacham's Guide to Literature for Young Adults. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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