The age of innocence is a novel that was published in 1920 and was written by Edith Wharton. Edith Wharton was born in 1862 in New York to a wealthy family in which she began later on in her life writing novels and poems about her own personal experiences as well as her thoughts of the life she lived that took place in the society of New York in which she was born and raised at.After she wrote this novel, which showed the behavior, adequate, and the truth of how the upper class functioned she won the Pulitzer Prize in 1921, which is an award in achievement in literature and other forms of writing. The novel in other hand takes place in the 1870’s in upper class New York during the Gilded Age. The Gilded age was a time in which many Industrialists gained wealth through corruption and blackmail. The characters in the novel are from a wealthy high-class family also known as the ” New York four hundred.
“Newland Archer is the novel’s main person as he is young lawyer engaged and soon married to May Welland who he finds himself in a puzzle when he’s torn between his wife and Countess Ellen Olenska. . Countess Ellen Olenska’s whole life was in Europe until her husband cheated on her, which led her to come back to New York to live the American life. May Archer married Newland Archer in which she symbolizes the attitudes of the wealthy during that time frame. The novel shows the rocky struggle between love and responsibility in which Newland is having feelings for Ellen as she arrives again in the states.
This then causes Newland to confess his love for her in which the moment is interrupted by the news that the wedding will be pushed sooner. He then marries May but is still having feelings for Ellen even when they no longer have contact. They rekindle the feelings when they see each other again and Newland actually thinks of leaving May but doesn’t when she reveals she’s pregnant. Lastly when their son grows up they go to Paris but Newland doesn’t go to see Ellen the woman he so deeply loved instead he sits on a bench and stares at her window.