"The House of Mirth" by Edith Wharton.
It is truly ironic after one works endlessly to benefiting oneself that such work only ends up being harmful. Such is the case of Miss Lily Bart in New York at the turn of the century. In Edith Wharton's House of Mirth, Lily Bart behaves as the young and jaded protagonist, desperate to establish and maintain her position on the social ladder. Her extreme carelessness and arrogance initially evoke less pity than desired by the classic Aristotelian formula, but as the story progresses, the potent horrors that unfold prove to iterate the several dark, underlying themes present in the story…
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