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Introduction & Overview of The Portrait of a Lady by Henry James

This Study Guide consists of approximately 43 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Portrait of a Lady.
This section contains 162 words
(approx. 1 page at 300 words per page)
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The Portrait of a Lady Summary & Study Guide Description

The Portrait of a Lady Summary & Study Guide includes comprehensive information and analysis to help you understand the book. This study guide contains the following sections:

This detailed literature summary also contains For Further Reading on The Portrait of a Lady by Henry James.

Introduction

Henry James was an established author when The Portrait of a Lady was published. The novel was first published serially in 1880 and 1881, appearing in Macmillan's Magazine in England and in Atlantic in the United States. The first book edition was published in 1881.

The Portrait of a Lady was widely, and mostly favorably, reviewed. Some reviewers recognized it immediately as James's most important novel thus far, and a few called it a masterpiece. Both of these opinions have been affirmed as time has passed. Many scholars consider The Portrait of a Lady one of the greatest novels in modern literature. Its heroine, Isabel Archer, is widely considered one of James's most powerful characters.

The Portrait of a Lady is, above all, Isabel's story. Following the technique of Russian author Ivan Turgenev, James makes Isabel the axis around which the story revolves. All the story's events, and all the other characters, exist only to serve the purpose of revealing Isabel to the reader.

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This section contains 162 words
(approx. 1 page at 300 words per page)
Purchase our The Portrait of a Lady Study Guide
Copyrights
The Portrait of a Lady from BookRags and Gale's For Students Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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