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    A Fearful Responsibility (And Other Stories)
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    Mr. Howells' refined humor is one of his most charming characteristics. It creeps out, however, on the most solemn occasions, and many a situation that might have been pathetic or commonplace is given a piquant turn by some deft touch of mellow satire which pleases and never wounds. This delicate, subdued humor, appealing to the finer sensibilities of the reader, is purely American. It is allied to the French in subtlety, but it has none of the Gallic dash and effervescence. It is a Puritan heritage, with a rich and mellow flavor. The average American combines the cynical penetration of the Frenchman with the mild contemplativeness of the Briton. The one does not sour him, it suggests piquant similes ; the other does not render him indifferent, it only makes him tolerant. Mr. James is also able to start with a satirical purpose and do effective work, but the finer touches are beyond his reach. Mr. Howells, as we have said, has this gift to perfection ; it gives his writings their broadly human interest ; but it is not often that he surrenders himself entirely to the mood of the moment. When he does, the reader is sure of a treat, and this he has in "A Fearful Responsibility." The very idea of a modest and scholarly man of Professor Elmore's unsophisticated nature being burdened with the guardianship of a brilliant young American girl in a foreign city at once suggests ludicrous possibilities. In this instance the motive is wrought out with rare skill. The hesitation and remorse of the Professor in managing Lily's love affairs ; the querulousness of Mrs. Elmore ; and the perfect resignation of the young lady to whatever fate may have in store are pleasantly depicted. Upon the humorous relations of the dramatis personae the chief interest of the story depends. With the exception of Hoskins, none of the characters is much more than a shadow. But the artist-consul is among the finest personages that Mr. Howells has introduced to us.

    Atributos LU

    TítuloA Fearful Responsibility (And Other Stories)
    AutorWilliam Dean Howells
    Año de Edición2020
    Núm. Páginas240
    Peso (Físico)0
    Tamaño Archivo (Virtual)0.35
    Formato Electrónico (Virtual)EPUB
    DRM (Virtual)

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