By William Dean Howells
Centering on a clash among a self-made millionaire and an idealistic reformer in turn-of-the-twentieth-century long island, A possibility of recent Fortunes insightfully renders the complexities of the yankee adventure at a time of serious social and financial upheaval and transformation. In its depiction of wealth, poverty, and manhattan urban existence, it is still a strikingly modern work.
Reproduced this is the authoritative Indiana college Press variation edited and annotated by means of David J. Nordloh, with complete scholarly observation and large textual gear.
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Extra resources for A Hazard of New Fortunes (Penguin Classics)
In linking ecopopulist protest to pastoral values, one may seem to blur categories, seeing that pastoral sentiment’s most obvious environmentalist legacy, preservationism in the Thoreau-Muir tradition, was to become the operating philosophy of the elite environmental organizations against which environmental justice activism has often pitted itself. Not only does the latter have a different demographic mix, it also differs in several core values, being more explicitly anthropocentric, focused more on populated areas than open space and on community betterment rather than alone-with-nature experiences.
Studies of other “contaminated communities” report a similar picture: an awakening to the horriﬁed realization that there is no protective environmental blanket, leaving one to feel dreadfully wronged. These documents raise insoluble chicken-and-egg questions about what’s constructing what. To what extent did media coverage of Love Canal shape Gibbs’s autobiography? Or did residents’ testimony shape the media coverage? To what extent were both pre-shaped by Silent Spring and its aftermath?
Carson’s adoption by the EJ movement as harbinger, prophet, and foremother is exemplary, in that Silent Spring’s controlled analytical-satiric tone and documentary circumspection mark it as directed toward a well-educated, middle-class sub/urban citizenry (originally it was serialized in The New Yorker) by a person of the same background. Toxicity, Risk, and Literary Imagination So much by way of genre analysis. Now let us consider some broader implications of this Virgilian tour for the understanding of the creative and critical work of environmental representation.
A Hazard of New Fortunes (Penguin Classics) by William Dean Howells