Author

Zachary Lang

Date of Award

4-2014

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Department

English

Abstract

Henry James’s first journey into the world of the American girl came in the form of one of his most read novellas, Daisy Miller. Through the eyes of Frederick Winterbourne, the reader begins a study of Daisy Miller, a character whom James uses to showcase many of the issues that were prevalent at the time including the role of women, societal standards, and class mobility. Winterbourne and Daisy are the principal characters, and as such they are given the most attention from readers and critics alike. The minor character Giovanelli, however, has received little critical attention. Despite being a minor character, he is a major catalyst for key events in the text. This essay will explore Giovanelli as a character, examine what his intentions are, investigate the greater role he plays in the development of both Daisy and Winterbourne, and highlight how he disrupts many of the cultural norms in the work.

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