The Portrait Of A Lady By Henry James Essay

The Portrait Of A Lady By Henry James Essay

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The Portrait of a Lady by Henry James is a book about an intelligent, independent, free spirited young woman name Isabel Archer. Her love for freedom and independence will later put her into troublesome spots later in her life.
Isabel, in her late twenties, was born into a respectable family who lived in Albany, New York. Her mother, unfortunately died when Isabel was a young girl, therefore subsequently her father raised her. Mr. Archer raised her in an unmethodical way resulting in her self education and increasing independence. Reaching her early adult years, she is now independent, well informed, and imaginative. During this time her father had recently died so her aunt, Mrs. Touchett had come to America to take her niece back with her to Europe so that she may raise her. Upon her arrival in Europe Isabel meets her uncle, Mr. Touchett, her cousin Ralph, and a great nobleman, Lord Warburton who falls in love with her first sight. After some time has passed Lord Warburton asked for her hand in marriage, but Isabel turned him down because she believed that with marriage comes loss of freedom and independence. Still, after her rejection she began to have doubts that she turned down a great social opportunity for herself. Not long afterwards her American friend who is a journalist, Henrietta Stackpole comes to visit her in Europe. There she tells Isabel that her longtime American suitor, Caspar Goodwood, had followed Isabel to Europe. While Isabel was in London she unexpectedly ran into Caspar. He once again tries to convince her to marry him as he did before and once again she convinces him that he must give her two years before she gives her answer. She wants to make as many independent judgments as she can and to travel t...


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...tment to honor her marriage or to divorce her husband and make a happy life elsewhere. In England Caspar tries to convince her to leave her marriage and run away with him, but her marriage to Osmond prevents her from choosing Caspar. So, regrettably Isabel leaves England and returns to her husband in Rome.
I like this book and I don’t like this book. I like how the books teaches you that if you do not keep your head on straight and become too absorbed in yourself it can lead to regrettable decisions. I do like this book mainly because of Isabel’s character and the way she handled her life and choices. In places where she believed she was being independent she was actually being too stubborn, ignorant, and arrogant to see the truth. Nonetheless, I believe that this book will be great for young and old alike. It has great morals to it and a wonderful plot story.

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