The Rise of Silas Lapham [William Dean Howells] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. The Rise of Silas Lapham is about the materialistic rise. The The Rise of Silas Lapham Community Note includes chapter-by-chapter summary and analysis, character by William Dean Howells The novel begins with the business man protagonist, Silas Lapham’s involvement with an interview . The novel recounts the moral dilemma of Colonel Silas Lapham, a newly wealthy , self-made businessman who has climbed over his former partner on the.

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This is a good Lapnam novel which is well shy of greatness because the author’s characters read with a few exceptions more like simple archetypes of the American Dream.

Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Howells was made e Willam Dean Howells was a novelist, short story writer, magazine editor, and mentor who wrote for various magazines, including the Atlantic Monthly and Harper’s Magazine. Lapham plagues Silas with remembrance of his sin, and he seizes the opportunity to repay his partner by lending him howel,s that he cannot return.

Literature Notes: The Rise of Silas Lapham | CliffsNotes

It is to Howells’ credit as a writer that this aspect of the novel is not treated with mushy sentimentality. This my friends was a delightful read. Silas’ marriage is firm but circumstances once consigned to the Past threaten both domestic as well as fiscal stability.

It is the plot, how the different parts fit together and how the sum of the parts are so realistically drawn that is the attraction of this book. Lapham, his wife, and two daughters, are pleased with their new social status, but ignorant in the ways of the upper class, and naive about proper behavior, protocol, etc.

Provided hours of entertainment and taught a few good lessons along the way. The resolution of hiwells love triangle of Irene Lapham, Tom Corey, and Penelope Lapham highlights Howells’ rejection of the conventions of sentimental romantic novels as unrealistic and deceitful.

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Silas, Persis and their two daughters are not socially ambitious, yet both young ladies are instantly attracted to Tom Corey, whose mistaken preference for the wrong sister results in soap operatic lahpam. A self-made man struggles with capitalism and class. Why had I never heard of Howells before? Everyone gets to self-sacrifice to their hearts content and it is fun to see them trying to beat each other to the pyre.

Lapham refuses and loses his business, but his concern for the good of the settlers redeems him morally.

I don’t have time to shed tears for the wealthy men self-made or not who mismanaged their empire. Howells explores the conflicts and stresses on the Lapham family as the son of one of Boston’s First Families goes to work for Silas and begins to court one of his daughters. According to the law at the time a person who refused to plead could not be tried, so they pressed him put a board on him and then piled rocks on top in an effort to get him to speak.

First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https: As a novel it contains too much feminine howelos and intense moral anguish over ultimately petty issues. This book was also one of the earliest novels to focus upon the rise of business owners in pursuit the American Dream.

After his wife and daughters do a favor for the better-placed Corey family, the family scion Tom Lpham begins to work for Lapham and also to sipas on the family regularly, presumably to court the prettier daughter Irene. About William Dean Howells. Shopbop Designer Fashion Brands. His material fall owing to his moral flaw of greed in his dealings with Rogers is predicted to introduce an element of tragedy.


Ships from and sold by Amazon. This is a sweet story overall, well constructed, with points of intrigue, anguish, a twist, elation, and a subtle, pertinent “moral of the story” ending. Later he can return to these origins when he refuses to cheat the English settlers in a business deal. The moralist cannot deny that, as a rule, well-bred though very wicked men are far more attractive and lovable than virtuous men; having crimes to atone for, they crave indulgence by anticipation, by being lenient to the shortcomings of those who judge them, and they are thought most kind.

Thank you for your feedback. I’m reading “Sister Carrie” right now, and let me tell you, there’s certainly not any prostitution in “Silas Lapham. Part tragedy, part comedy of manners, it gave me a good look at the late nineteenth century clash between old money and new money.

University of Pennsylvania Press, Indeed, the romantic triangle of the Lapham sisters Penelope and Irene pf the attentions of Tom Corey provides a lighter though interesting subplot, offering literary breaks from the serious, long-term issues of financial and social ruin which eventually overwhelm the once unified family and result in the protagonist’s inevitable, downward spiral.

Sep 17, Laura marked it as to-read Recommended to Laura by: When Tom Corey begins calling on the Laphams regularly, everyone assumes his interest howellss Irene has grown, and Irene takes a fancy to him.

The Hubbard interview is the most objective, yet clever, way to present Silas’ background.

This is not to say that love and romance is absent from this book. Francis Parkman, Historian as Hero: Here is an apt quote from a Balzac book that I’m reading after this one: