What does May Welland represent?

What does May Welland represent?

The Age of Innocence A perfect product of the social code, May Welland Archer begins the novel in ignorance and ends it in wisdom. When she first appears, she is the personification of innocence. She marries Newland and her slim intellectual abilities never vary, but her wisdom in manipulating Newland grows immensely.

What is the main conflict in The Age of Innocence?

The protagonist Archer defends Ellen—who is a childhood friend and his fiancée’s cousin. This turning point introduces both aspects of the main conflict—Archer’s attachment to Ellen and society’s resistance to her.

Why is The Age of Innocence called that?

The Age of Innocence is a title both ironic and poignant: ironic because the “age” or period of the novel, the late nineteenth century, teems with intolerance, collusion, and cynicism; poignant because the only innocence lost is that of Newland Archer, the resolute gentleman whose insight into the machinations of …

What are the main themes of The Age of Innocence?

One of the themes central to The Age of Innocence is the struggle between the individual and the group. Newland Archer has been raised into a world where manners and moral codes dictate how the individual will act, and in some cases, even think.

What is the central idea of Countess Olenska?

Ellen, the Countess Olenska, fulfills Newland’s longing for an emotional fantasy life. Her words, her unconventional taste in clothing and interior decorating, and her attitudes symbolize the exotic to traditional Newland. She causes him to question his narrow existence and brings out his protective instincts.

What is the role of social convention in The Age of Innocence?

Inexorably bound by social conventions, Wharton’s characters in The Age of Innocence rely on the signs proscribed by society’s dictates to convey their meaning to others, and in so doing, to achieve their implicit personal (or group) agendas.

Does Newland end up with Ellen?

She was more interested in securing a marriage for herself than having a husband who loved her. And she knew something was up with Ellen before she went through with the wedding! Newland married her, yes he did, but she was a suffocating leech to him.

What is the meaning of The Age of Innocence?

A time when a person or society exists in a state of childlike simplicity or naivety.

Why does Newland marry May?

May Welland When they are in St. Augustine, though, May gives Newland a rare glimpse of the maturity and compassion he had previously ignored. She offers to release him from their engagement so he can marry the woman he truly loves, thinking he wants to be with Mrs.

Does Newland love may?

Newland felt a surge of love for May. Particularly as she didn’t seem to have guessed the true nature of his feelings for the Countess. “No, my darling,” he declared. “It is you whom I adore.”

Why did Edith Wharton wrote The Age of Innocence?

Advised by her editor in 1919 that the American public was tired of war stories, a frustrated Wharton agreed to write, on the same publication schedule, a new “House of Mirth-type” novel. Wharton, who had just moved to a new home outside Paris, started The Age of Innocence in September 1919.

What is the structure of The Age of Innocence?

The novel is divided into two books, made up of a total of thirty- four chapters. The overall arc of the story is an inward journey made by a man, Newland Archer, as he struggles with his place in the world. In terms of plot, Book I is divided from Book II by the marriage of Newland Archer to May Welland.