How is suspense created in the prologue of Ethan Frome?

The prologue of the novella sets the story frame, whose purpose is primarily to create suspense around Ethan Frome’s story. Through the narrator’s observations the reader develops a strong desire to learn the story of the accident and solve the riddle of Ethan’s isolation.

What does the L symbolize in Ethan Frome?

Other symbols include the dead vine on the front porch of Fromes’ farmhouse that symbolizes the dead and dying spirits that inhabit the house and its adjacent graveyard, the farmhouse itself that has lost the “L” seems to be symbolic of Ethan (the house looks “forlorn” and “lonely”), it stands alone without support …

What is the ending of Ethan Frome?

Instead of finding escape in suicide, he and Mattie have ended up in a state of living death, in which all Mattie’s vitality has been leeched away, and she has transformed into a carbon copy of her former opposite, Zeena.

What is the author’s purpose in Ethan Frome?

Author’s Purpose A massive thematic piece of Ethan Frome is the social and moral concerns placed on the justification of individual desires, seeing as the novel revolves around Ethan’s constant vying for a woman who is not his wife.

Why did Ethan marry Zeena?

Ethan married Zeena because he was afraid of silence, just as his mother was. The Fromes appear to suffer from a fear of loneliness, which causes them to make poor decisions. Wharton implies that Zeena got “ill” because she couldn’t bear moving to a larger town where Ethan would be out of her control.

What is the main theme of Ethan Frome?

Major themes in Ethan Frome include silence, isolation, illusion, and the consequences that are the result of living according to the rules of society. Wharton relies on personal experiences to relate her thematic messages.

Who suffers the most in Ethan Frome?

It is in these ways that Ethan Frome suffers throughout the novel and to the highest degree he is a victim of circumstance. As Mrs. Hale said when referring to who suffers the most of the three, “When I see that I think it’s him that suffers the most”(Wharton 156).

What illness does Zeena have in Ethan Frome?

Character Analysis Zenobia (Zeena) Frome She is asthmatic and “sickly.” She speaks in a plaintive, whiny drawl.

Why is Ethan Frome a tragic hero?

His concern for Zeena prevents him for fulfilling his own dreams. The tragic part is that in trying to keep Zeena from suffering, Ethan makes them both miserable. Though Ethan means well, everything turns out badly for everyone involved. Extraordinary talents, tragic flaws, terrible mistakes = Ethan as a tragic hero.

Are Zeena and Ethan cousins?

Yes, Ethan and Zeena are cousins. They first met when Zeena came to Starkfield to help look after Ethan’s sickly mother.

What does the pickle dish seem to symbolize in the novel?

The Cat and the Pickle Dish The animal serves as a symbol of Zeena’s tacit invisible presence in the house, as a force that comes between Mattie and Ethan, and reminds them of the wife’s existence. Zeena’s anguish over the broken dish manifests her deeper anguish over her fractured relationship.

What does Ethan Frome look like?

Ethan Frome is the protagonist of the novel. A “ruin of a man,” according to The Narrator, he is still a “striking figure.” He appears to be tall, though his “strong shoulders” are “bent out of shape.” He has blue eyes and brown hair with a streak of light.

Why does Ethan Frome like Mattie Silver?

Mattie Silver Attractive, young, and energetic, Mattie becomes the object of Ethan’s affection, and reciprocates his infatuation. Because the reader sees Mattie only through Ethan’s own lovesick eyes, Mattie never truly emerges as a well-rounded character.

How old is Mattie in Ethan Frome?

Mattie is twenty-one years old. At this age, it was normal for a woman to be married with children of her own.

Who broke the pickle dish in Ethan Frome?


What did Ethan do with the broken pieces?

Catastrophe threatens when the cat shatters Zeena’s favorite pickle dish, which Mattie had taken out to celebrate their dinner together, but Ethan quickly pieces the shards together and tucks the broken dish back in its place.

What is the conflict in Ethan Frome?

major conflict Ethan’s main fight is with his own conscience, as he decides whether or not to reveal to Mattie his true feelings. His struggles are exacerbated by his surroundings—Zeena, the bleak Starkfield landscape, his home—which often take on an oppressive quality.

What color is associated with Mattie Silver?

Mattie’s Red Scarf and Ribbon Symbol Analysis. The red scarf and red ribbon Mattie wears at the dance and later at the farmhouse represent her passionate nature and the passion that Ethan feels for her. The color red also makes her stand out from the crowd, confirming Ethan’s belief that she is exceptional.

What does Mattie Silver look like?

Described in terms of nature and fantasy, her expressive face alters “like a wheat-field under a summer breeze,” her voice makes Ethan think of “a rustling covert leading to enchanted glades” with “laughter sparkling through her eyelashes.” As she sews, Mattie’s hands flutter like birds engaged in building their nests; …

How does Zeena feel about Mattie?

She admires Ethan’s observations and thoughts, and shares his appreciation of nature. Throughout the novel, Wharton foreshadows the tragedy that befalls Mattie. Mattie experiences an internal conflict when Zeena finally does want Mattie out of the house. Mattie doesn’t know what she will do.