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Literary Precedents for The Reef

This Study Guide consists of approximately 11 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Reef.
This section contains 96 words
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The Reef has been called Wharton's most Jamesian novel. The basic situation is the kind that Henry James had developed in many of his novels from The Portrait of a Lady (1881) through The Golden Bowl (1904). A woman becomes engaged to a man, only to find herself in a more complicated situation than she had ever anticipated because of his ties to an earlier relationship. The careful attention to point of view and the use of scene painting to suggest several levels of meaning are two particularly Jamesian techniques that Wharton uses throughout the novel.

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This section contains 96 words
(approx. 1 page at 300 words per page)
Purchase our The Reef Short Guide
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