Ethan Frome By Edith Wharton Essay

737 Words Feb 27th, 2016 3 Pages
In the book Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton, a man named Ethan who lives on his family’s farm with no hope of leaving, struggles to support and to love his wife. When he begins to fall for his wife’s cousin who is helping out in the house during the midst of a cold depressing winter, she begins to turn it into a winter wonderland. Many aspects of the book lead up to the suicide attempt of Mattie and Ethan; it all starts with Mattie turning down Denis Eady and then Ethan kissing the cloth. Everything swirls into a whirlwind of love, sadness and madness. She had an eye to see and an ear to hear: he could show her things and tell her things, and taste the bliss of feeling that all he imparted left long reverberations and echoes he could wake at will. (Wharton 14)

The beginning of Ethan’s’ affections for Mattie started many months before the start of Ethan Frome, however the first we see of it is when he goes to pick her up from a church dance. When he arrives he stands in the shadows as she talks to Denis Eady. While he stands there Denis tries to get Mattie to let him take her home. Ethan secretly hopes to himself that Mattie will deny his offer, which she does shown here “Good-night! I’m not getting in.” (Silver 18) He then comes out of the shadows and walks to her to take her home. Mattie’s refusal to Denis gives Ethan hope that she feels the same way about him that he does for her. Throughout the whole book we hear about the frigidness of a Starkfield winter…

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