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Love Triangle Essay

1195 words - 5 pages

Roman Fever refers to a particular deadly strain of malaria that affected Rome. People used to believe that you could catch it from being out in the cold. In the short story “Roman Fever “written by Edith Wharton, the roman fever is not only from a disease, but from love. Mrs. Slade and Mrs. Ansley have been friends since they first met as young women in Rome, when Alida (Mrs. Slade) was engaged to Delphin Slade. This friendship forms the enduring tie between Mrs. Slade and Mrs. Ansley. However, their friendship is weakening by the deeper, hostile feelings they have for each other, feelings that they hardly dare to admit. Because each has something to hide about the early days ...view middle of the document...

Now that we discussed the theme of the story let me tell you about the author perspective.The author had described the women’s interpretation of each other as “through the wrong end of her little telescope” which becomes extremely clear upon the ending of the story. The women viewed each other the opposite of who they really were by doing so through the influence of their own secret. When Mrs. Ansley walks away from Mrs. Slade, not only is it an indication that she is moving on, but she is also asserting that she has one-up on Mrs. Slade. This is something she always felt she had, through Barbara, and she was not willing to accept that Mrs. Slade was going to take this away from her by admitting that she had unintentionally orchestrated the entire thing.
According to Michael J. Cummings, Wharton hints at the possibility that Barbara Ansley and Jenny Slade will repeat the actions of their mothers. She does so by creating the following parallels between Grace's daughter and Alida and between Alida's daughter and Grace: Both girls are receiving the attentions of young men, as their mothers did twenty-five years before. One of the girls, Barbara, is vivacious and very smart, as Alida was. The other girl, Jenny, is very beautiful but otherwise ordinary, as Grace was. Barbara is likely to become the fiancée of a promising bachelor, according to Alida. She muses that "Babs would almost certainly come back engaged to the extremely eligible Campolieri." Twenty-five years before, Alida herself was engaged to a promising bachelor. . As daughters of Delphin Slade, Barbara and Jenny are half-sisters. This fact is significant in relation to the story about Grace's Great-Aunt Harriet. While competing for a man with her own sister, she deliberately tricked the girl into exposing herself to Roman fever.  .One may speculate that Wharton must have created all these similarities for a reason, mainly, to suggest that circumstances are right for the past to repeat itself.
I think we can make some connections between the setting and the actions and the characters, and the themes. We have the ancient ruins. We have the ruins, of a friendship/relationship, of lives past and passed. We can make a good many relations. It read as a bit of a soap opera with all the deceit and jealousy that was running out of control. I also think the women were being compared to the ruins of Rome. There was this...

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