The Big Read Blog (Archive)

Edith Wharton, The Architect

Washington, DC

Edith Wharton, courtesy of Yale Collection of American Literature, Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscripts Library.

Edith Wharton writes like a librettist composes operas, or like a sculptor builds structures. Today, we take a look at (and a listen to) the lasting effect of Wharton's exquisite composition of words, or as playwright David Ives puts it, her "paragraphing." Little wonder she won the 1921 Pulitzer Prize for The Age of Innocence, the first woman to do so. In the clip below, we hear from screenwriter Jay Cocks, who penned the Scorsese-directed adaptation of the novel, and David Ives.

[audio:http://bigreadblog.arts.gov//audio/WhartonArchitect.mp3]

[transcript]

Alfred Molina is the actor who beautifully reads this excerpt and many others throughout our half-hour audio guide about The Age of Innocence. You can listen to the entire program on The Big Read Website.

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