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Planning to teach Wharton soon, I took another look at Franzen's New Yorker hatchet job on Edith Wharton, and it was worse than I remembered. The critics' darling praises her classics The House of Mirth, The Custom of the Country, and The Age of Innocence but grossly misreads her character and her life.
The real shame here, the burning shame that should sting the face of all politicians as they ignore calls for extended unemployment benefits, reduce food stamps for the poor, or ignore the need for massive student loan revision is this: They would have to watch uncomfortably and listen to the reality of life for their constituents.
As a young, professional, 20-something who has spent my adult years focused on my own career goals while fumbling parts of my personal and professional life along the way, one thing I've learned is that at some point women, and particularly career oriented women, need to be very honest about what they want both in their professional and personal lives.