Edith Wharton

Standard Name: Wharton, Edith
Birth Name: Edith Newbold Jones
Married Name: Edith Newbold Wharton
EW , early twentieth-century novelist of American nationality, upper-middle-class status and subject-matter, and European cultural interests, has suffered in critical estimation by being ranked second to her friend and contemporary Henry James . Writing through the modernist period, she remained traditional in her techniques. Most of her stories revolve around the dilemmas faced by women in a society which offers them little while depending on their compliance. She produced non-fictional prose, short fiction, travel writing, autobiography, and letters as well as the novels for which she is best known. She is currently enjoying a boom in reputation.


Connections Sort descending Author name Excerpt
Friends, Associates A. Mary F. Robinson
Their neighbours there included Edith Wharton .
Colby, Vineta. Vernon Lee: A Literary Biography. University of Virginia Press.
Maurice Barrès , a close friend with whom AMFR 's correspondence was posthumously published, was a French politician holding fairly extreme nationalist views. Daniel Halévy , editor...
Friends, Associates Sybille Bedford
Introduced to Aldous Huxley and his wife Maria by the South African poet Roy Campbell while at Sanary, the young SB became their intimate friend.
Bedford, Sybille. Quicksands. Counterpoint.
She was later embarrassed by her earlier admiration for...
Friends, Associates Hope Mirrlees
While living in Paris, Mirrlees and Harrison entertained visitors who included HM 's mother (widowed in 1924), and Virginia and Leonard Woolf .
Robinson, Annabel. The Life and Work of Jane Ellen Harrison. Oxford University Press.
The two women were acquainted with Edith Wharton , Dorothy (Strachey)
Friends, Associates Vernon Lee
VL and Edith Wharton met at Lee's Florence home, Il Palmerino. Wharton later called Lee the first highly cultivated and brilliant woman I had ever known.
Colby, Vineta. Vernon Lee: A Literary Biography. University of Virginia Press.
Friends, Associates Lady Ottoline Morrell
LOM 's passion for creative gatherings was fostered on visits she made to the the home of Ethel Sands and Nan Hudson at Newington in Oxfordshire. She was deeply inspired by its lively intellectual...
Intertextuality and Influence Anita Brookner
Its male protagonist—still unusual for Brookner—is an academic, parent of a small daughter. His wife leaves him during the course of the story: though he idealises women, he does not achieve a successful relationship with...
Literary responses Louisa May Alcott
Among a chorus of praise from those who read LMA when they were young, Edith Wharton stands out as harder to please. In her memoir A Backward Glance, 1934, she recalls how her mother...
Literary responses Elizabeth Robins
A reviewer for the Nation complained of the novel's Edith-Wharton -like deliberate, elliptical, smooth-spoken, post-Jacobite manner, which it judged too niggling and high-heeled for much real usefulness to American readers.
Cather, Willa. My Ántonia. Editor Urgo, Joseph R., Broadview Press.
Literary responses Violet Trefusis
Michael Holroyd suggests in the Afterword to A Book of Secrets: Illegitimate Daughters—Absent Fathers, 2010, that scholarly interest in Vita Sackville-West created a biassed climate for the reception of VT . Whatever vessel set...
Literary responses Frances Hodgson Burnett
This book is said to have been particularly appreciated by later novelists Nancy Mitford and Marghanita Laski . The early twenty-first-century reprint was very well reviewed, and was likened to the work of Edith Wharton .
Persephone Books. http://www.persephonebooks.co.uk/.
Literary responses Sarah Waters
Waters says that while some of her lesbian readers felt angry or let down by her writing a book without lesbian content, this was the book that my 10-year-old self was destined to write.
Allardice, Lisa. “Sarah Waters: ’Some of my readers really did hate me. They felt let down’”. theguardian.com.
Hilary Mantel
Literary responses Flora Macdonald Mayor
Rediscovery of FMM was fostered by Sybil Oldfield , who in 1984 published an extensive account of Mayor's life and works (which she narrated in parallel with those of Mayor's contemporary Mary Sheepshanks ). During...
Occupation Eva Figes
EF had a long stint as co-editor of this series, which includes works on Margaret Atwood , Jane Austen , Elizabeth Bowen , Elizabeth Barrett Browning , Frances Burney , Willa Cather , Colette ,...
Reception Willa Cather
WC 's own later comments on this book were somewhat grudging. It was conventional, she said, carefully arranged but unnecessary and superficial.
Cather, Willa. On Writing. Editor Tennant, Stephen, Alfred A. Knopf.
When she wrote it she thought it a great thing that the...
Reception Charlotte Perkins Gilman
The Yellow Wall-Paper, Women and Economics, and Herland all feature prominently in North American curricula, and also attract ongoing scholarly inquiry.
Lane, Ann J. To Herland and Beyond. Pantheon Books.
Fishkin, Shelley Fisher. “Reading Gilman in the Twenty-First Century”. The Mixed Legacy of Charlotte Perkins Gilman, edited by Catherine J. Golden and Joanna Schneider Zangrando, Associated University Presses, pp. 209-20.
Judith A. Allen 's The Feminism of Charlotte Perkins Gilman...


1861: A company in Salem, Massachusetts, issued...

Writing climate item


A company in Salem, Massachusetts, issued what seems to be the earliest version of a game called Authors, whose object was to collect sets of cards bearing the names of writers and the...

23 October 1920: In his novel Main Street, Sinclair Lewis...

Writing climate item

23 October 1920

In his novelMain Street, Sinclair Lewis excoriated the small-town life often represented in American literature as the backbone of national life.

26 September 1991: Elaine Showalter published Sister's Choice:...

Writing climate item

26 September 1991

Elaine Showalter published Sister's Choice: Traditions and Change in American Women's Writing , complement or sequel to her book of British women's literary history, A Literature of Their Own, 1977.


Wharton, Edith. A Backward Glance. D. Appleton-Century, 1934.
Wharton, Edith. A Son at the Front. D. Appleton, 1923.
Wharton, Edith. Artemis to Actaeon and Other Verse. Scribner, 1909.
Wharton, Edith. Ethan Frome. C. Scribner’s Sons, 1911.
Wharton, Edith. Fighting France. C. Scribner’s Sons, 1915.
Wharton, Edith. Madame de Treymes. C. Scribner’s Sons, 1907.
Wharton, Edith. Old New York. D. Appleton, 1924.
Wharton, Edith. Tales of Men and Ghosts. C. Scribner’s Sons, 1910.
Wharton, Edith. The Age of Innocence. D. Appleton, 1920.
Wharton, Edith. The Buccaneers. Editor Lapsley, Gaillard, D. Appleton-Century, 1938.
Wharton, Edith. The Cruise of the Vanadis. Editor Lesage, Claudine, Sterne, 1992.
Wharton, Edith. The Custom of the Country. C. Scribner’s Sons, 1913.
Wharton, Edith, and Ogden Codman. The Decoration of Houses. C. Scribner’s Sons, 1897.
Wharton, Edith. The Gods Arrive. D. Appleton, 1932.
Wharton, Edith. The Greater Inclination. C. Scribner’s Sons, 1899.
Wharton, Edith. The House of Mirth. C. Scribner’s Sons, 1905.
Wharton, Edith. The Reef. D. Appleton, 1912.
Wharton, Edith. The Writing of Fiction. C. Scribner’s Sons, 1925.
Wharton, Edith. Verses. C. E. Hammett, Jr, 1878.
Wharton, Edith. Xingu and Other Stories. Macmillan and Co., 1916.