Raphaëlle Costa de Beauregard

Les « fêtes galantes » dans The House of Mirth – ou les modalités des règles du jeu

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Abstract :
This paper attempts a parallel between Edith Wharton’s 1905 novel The House of Mirth and its screen transposition by Terence Davies in his eponymous 2000 film. The discussion addresses the two works from a special angle, that of comedy. The social comedy of the rules of the game are often referred to in the novel and the film uses the situational irony which derives from the constant transgression of such rules by everyone of the characters. The main protagonist Lily Bart is caught in the maze of these different rules and eventually brought to utter destruction. The film emphasizes the irony as well as the tragedy of her fall. A central emblem of the secret life of the heroine is found in the novel, Mrs Lloyd by Joshua Reynolds; in the film, Terence Davies uses a painting by Watteau, Ceres; the shift in focus which results from this change highlights central issues at stake in both novel and film.
Keywords : novel, irony, film, The House of Mirth, Edith Wharton, Terence Davies, Ceres, comedy, Mrs Lloyd, Joshua Reynolds, tragedy, Watteau
Published : 2018-09-11

Citation

Raphaëlle Costa de Beauregard, « Les « fêtes galantes » dans The House of Mirth – ou les modalités des règles du jeu », Cycnos, 2018-09-11. URL : http://epi-revel.univ-cotedazur.fr/publication/item/162