The Theme Of Social Criticism In The House Of Mirth

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The House of Mirth is a novel that condemns the elitist world of women and promotes the idea that money can't buy happiness. Wharton wanted to present American aristocracy when that aristocracy was doing so well. The novel highlights each aspect of a person's social behavior because each detail can have implications. Wharton wanted to mock the society, but also to show the tragedies in it. Wharton considered New York society to be arrogant, trivial, and ridiculous. The burden of tragedy to her often a humorous bitter satire of the ways of the wealthy is related with Wharton's personal connection to this world. She is presenting a good combination of criticism and social satire. According to Auchincloss, Wharton "had a firm grasp of what 'society,' in the smaller sense of the word, was actually made up of. She understood that it was arbitrary, capricious, and inconsistent; she was aware that it did not hesitate to abolish its standards while most loudly proclaiming them. She knew money could open doors and when it couldn't, when lineage would serve and when it could be merely sneered at." Auchincloss continued: "She realized that the social game was…show more content…
Because of the ambiguous end, the question is whether or not Lily commits suicide. She wants to sleep for a long time because she is extremely tired and she wants to escape her current situation with no visible solution but still, makes plans for the future by asking Rosedale to visit her and she also tells Selden that they will meet again but after taking a long vacation by herself. Lily's death seems so avoidable giving the fact that so many people were willing to help her in every way possible. No one should have her tragic destiny if that person has a group of close
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