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One of Wharton's most significant engagements with modernity, Twilight Sleep is also among Wharton's most vocal expressions of anxiety about race--most pointedly Jews, Italians, African Americans--and her distrust of the so-called melting pot.
This is hardly the "warm and jolly and inconsequent" scene described in Twilight Sleep.
Faulkner's inspired response to this reference in Twilight Sleep took Whistler's work from the province of composed mothers and peaceful bridges in twilight to recall Whistler's own explosive nocturne.
Darl's "Cubist painting" is a rewriting of the very passage in Wharton's Twilight Sleep that immediately precedes the most racist scene that Edith Wharton ever wrote.
Whereas the Gothic element of Twilight Sleep has been neglected, its humorous element seems to have divided readers.
7) Similarly, in Twilight Sleep, satire jostles with hints of the uncanny--a word used several times in the novel--in order to challenge the reader's complacency about the nature of progress and the place of women in the modern world.
Performers like Irene Castle made the new dances elegant and acceptable; the younger set could learn the new steps by day at the Castles' dance schools and, by night, show off their abilities at cabarets like their Castles in the Air and New York Roof(the latter, perhaps, parodied in Twilight Sleep as the Housetop).
In her discussion of this letter, Dale Bauer is quick to point out Wharton's increasing racism, but she nonetheless maintains that novels like Twilight Sleep claim that Wharton's Euro-American audience "had less to fear from foreign intruders .
Describing Twilight Sleep as Wharton's most "political" novel, Bauer investigates the implications of "mechanized childbirth" (p.
Following a general introduction, Barrish devotes a chapter each to readings of what he terms "key works of American literary realism" (1): William Dean Howells's The Rise of Silas Lapham (1885), Henry James's The Wings of the Dove (1902), Abraham Cahan's The Rise of David Levinsky (1917), and Edith Wharton's seldom discussed Twilight Sleep (1927).
Edith Wharton's Twilight Sleep (1927) suggests that the increasing rate of divorce and a more tolerant attitude to it add to the pervasive feelings of fractured identity and emptiness in human relationships present in modernist writing.
Although some studies criticize novels such as Glimpses of the Moon, The Children, and Twilight Sleep, Preston argues that "by setting the spare, neoclassical elegance of her prose and controlling design against the moral and behavioural chaos of a fallen world," Wharton reproduces larger cultural tensions between order and disorder (168).