(Penguin Classics)RED £7.99
The House of Mirth, By Edith Wharton
Sunday 20 June 2010
With Sex and the City 2 still in cinemas, let us pause a moment to reflect on the journey women have taken over the past 100 years. The very things that Carrie Bradshaw and clan are admired for – careless love and careless spending – were enough to ruin a woman at the turn of the previous century, as shown in Edith Wharton's 1905 novel The House of Mirth, one of a selection of Penguin Classics recently reprinted in partnership with the charitable (Product)RED brand.
Lily Bart is a 29-year-old high-society debutante in 1890s New York. Wharton details, in crackling and complex prose, the societal technicalities of the world she was born into. Bart hesitates to accept marriage and, in revenge, her social circle conspires to trap her in rumours of debt and an affair with a married man. She is propelled down the social scale and forced to take work in a milliner's. In disgrace, she takes an overdose. From our 21st-century point of view, the irony is that – work being a path to liberation for many a woman – Bart was taking the first steps to freedom.
tv Review: Miranda Hart and co deliver the festive goods
tvReview: Older generation get hot under the collar this Christmas
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 The political parties aren't all the same – which means 2015 will be a 'big-choice' election
- 2 President of Argentina adopts Jewish godson to 'stop him turning into a werewolf'
- 3 ALS ice bucket challenge co-founder Corey Griffin drowns, aged 27
- 4 The 'Black Museum': After 150 years, public set to see exhibits from police’s grisly crime museum
- 5 Naomi Wolf reacts to Isis 'conspiracy theories' critism after she questions whether beheading videos are real
Peter Lik: The self-proclaimed 'fine-art photographer' whose work sells for millions
Downton Abbey Christmas special 2014, review: Love is everywhere, actually
The golden age of TV comedy is here
The Boy in the Dress, TV review: David Walliams' Boxing Day treat is a celebration of being different
From Marvel to Star Wars: The rise of cinema’s shared universes
British actor Idris Elba cannot star as James Bond because he is black, says shock jock Rush Limbaugh
Germany anti-Islam protests: 17,000 march on Dresden against 'Islamification of the West'
Ukip member gets into Christmas spirit with Union Flag plea to Santa 'for our country back'
Immigrants make UK racist, says Ukip councillor Trevor Shonk
BBC director Danny Cohen: Rising UK antisemitism makes me feel more uncomfortable than ever
Katie Hopkins speaks out on childhood obesity: 'Parents of fat children should be prosecuted for child cruelty'