The Theme Of Courage In Ethan Frome, By Edith Wharton

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Ethan Frome written by Edith Wharton was an astounding yet surprising novel. The theme that really stood out the most in this story was courage. Throughout the story Ethan has to build the courage to deal with his feminine conflicts that change his outlook towards other characters. The discussion of characters and their choices will take place throughout this essay too. In the story Ethan is married to Zeena while he is in love with her cousin, Mattie Silver, that lives with them at the moment. In the book it states, “All his life was lived in the sight and sound of Mattie Silver, and he could no longer conceive of its being otherwise”(Wharton 49). To what was stated before, Ethan was in love with Mattie. He felt that his marriage with Zeena was dead and there was no fixing it. The second cited text states, “He was a poor man, the husband of a sickly woman, whom his desertion would leave alone and destitute; and even if he had had the heart to desert her he could have done so only by deceiving two kindly people who had pitied him” (97). Ethan was going to leave Zeena and move out West with Mattie, but he would have to hurt two friends to do that. This whole book really falls under the theme of courage. Ethan took bold measures to do what was right verses following his heart and hurting people that felt for him. Courage is to be defined as, “Strength in the face of pain or grief”(google). Ethan stayed courageous throughout the whole book by not following his heart and

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