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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He regains happiness only with the loss of his fortune and the abandonment of his social aspirations. Learn more about Amazon Prime.

The Rise of Silas Lapham by William Dean Howells

The Rise of Silas Lapham. Though this is perhaps his best known work – and maybe his best work also – this is still just 4 stars from me. Hubbard tells Silas, a nineteenth-century millionaire, that he wants his money or his life. The clash between these two hits its crescendo in the novel’s brilliant middle-section, particularly at a dinner party where the Laphams are guests of the Boston Brahmin Coreys.

Amusingly, I found what I consider a blatantly obvious mistake in the Norton notes.

The Rise of Silas Lapham

One of the author’s secondary themes is a warning against the evil effects of novels–at least on untutored female minds, where the current trend of heroines who are hell bent on self-sacrifice in the name of Love, may lead some earnest maidens astray, causing great needless grief to all parties.


Can a simple, plain-spoken man from the Vermont backwoods survive such metropolitan snares?

And yet, Silas and his family come through their financial ruin with their characters not only intact, but also strengthened and edified. Silas’ morality does not fail him.

The Rise of Silas Lapham, by William Dean Howells

Hubbard is given a ride back to the Events office in Lapham’s buggy and learns of Silas’ love for a fast horse. Mar 30, Shane rated it did not like it Recommends it for: Apparently, early on he bought out his partner who brought capital to his business. The dialogue seems stilted, cold and formal in places but that may tend to be so in Boston.

His business success generates sufficient revenues to merit the construction of a new home on the water side of Beacon Street in the Back Bay of Boston. If you know what I’m talking about, pick up “Silas Lapham. Unfortunately, our editorial approach may not be able to accommodate all contributions.

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View all 9 comments. It is refreshing to read a novel where actions have consequences, and the protagonists bear gracefully even the negative consequences.

After Lapham moves from Vermont to Boston, his family befriends the Coreys, a Brahmin family in howelld difficulties. The Corey family, despite their snobbishness, are likewise very decent people as they seem to feel it would be bad manners to be otherwise. The partner wasn’t helping the business and didn’t have the vision Lapham had.


Many thanks to their original creators. As it turns out this is not the case. He always gives a very good performance.

There is a truly tragic element to the story, and the clash of nouveau riche and old money would have appealed particularly to the reading public of this era. Overall, the book has an amazing chiasmus structure: If you prefer to suggest your own revision of the article, you can go to hwells mode requires login. His major asset, the new home on Beacon Street, burns down before its completion.

I laughed out loud on several occasions.

What was a surprise, for me, at least, was that the first two-thirds of the novel was so witty and humorous. Corey joins the Lapham’s paint business in an attempt to find his place in the world, rather than rely on the savings of his father, Bromfield Corey.

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