Dr Katie McGettigan on The Age of Innocence
The Age of Innocence reflects the late-nineteenth-century popular interest in anthropology
Newland Archer shares the author's interest in anthropology
Wharton setrs up New York City of the 1870s as a subject for anthropology. It is like a distant city.
Wharton sets up 1870s New York as an epoch, 'the Age of Innocence' like the golden age.
The social rituals of New York in the 1870s are almost as inexplicable as the rituals of so-called 'primitive societies'
Newland Archer thinks of himself as a great anthropologist who can see past social rituals when nobody else can and is proven wrong when he becomes the subject of study for everybody else.