EthanFromeEssay - Environmentally Challenged In Ethan Frome...

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Environmentally Challenged In Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton it is no secret that Starkfield is a demonstration of its namesake.The environment is no coincidence and it contributes to the story so much that events would not be the same without it’s isolation. The characters themselves have their own mannerisms and behaviors that have formed through time in this isolated place. Ethan Frome illustrates how people subjected to bad environments easily fall victim to circumstances and are unable to better themselves. The setting, Starkfield, holds a lot of significance to the story. Its meaning is stark, desolate, empty and isolated. It is a cold winter town in Massachusetts, primarily Puritan, autere people, and fairly oppressive. It seems as though the people who have lived there for long have come to a conclusion and a reality that it is a very negative place, and escape is nearly essential to happiness. “Guess he’s been in Starkfield too many winters. Most the smart ones get away” (Wharton 7 ) Ethan Frome is a tragedy of people helpless to suffering in the bad environment they emulate. Another perspective of Starkfield is Mattie’s. She has a positivity and freshness of a young woman looking for happiness. Mattie came to town sick and in mourning after her family died, and comes to stay with the Fromes. In time, she flourishes in the

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