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The House of Mirth

The House of Mirth

by Edith Wharton

Women and Femininity Quotes

How we cite our quotes:

Quote #1

"What's become of Dillworth?" he asked.

"Oh, his mother was frightened – she was afraid I should have all the family jewels reset. And she wanted me to promise that I wouldn't do over the drawing-room."

"The very thing you are marrying for!"

"Exactly. So she packed him off to India." (1.1.77-9)

Women are always generally control, while men are usually passive in House of Mirth.

Quote #2

She had the art of giving self-confidence to the embarrassed, but she was not equally sure of being able to embarrass the self-confident. (1.2.8)

For this reason, Lily is better able to manipulate men than women.

Quote #3

Miss Bart stared in affected reproval. "I thought you were so fond of Bertha."

"Oh, I am – it's much safer to be fond of dangerous people. (1.4.42-3)

This, too, is one of Lily's mistakes in House of Mirth – not tactically choosing her friends. For a woman who is supposedly cut out for this stuff, Lily never seems to play her societal cards right.

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