Subjects Freshman Year Reading African American Studies African Studies American Studies Anthropology Art, Film, Music and Architecture Asian Studies Business and Economics Criminology Education Environmental Studies Foreign Language Instructional Materials Gender Studies History Irish Studies Jewish Studies Latin American & Caribbean Studies Law and Legal Studies Literature and Drama Literature in Spanish Media Issues, Journalism and Communication Middle East Studies Native American Studies Philosophy Political Science Psychology Reference Religion Russian and Eastern European Studies Science and Mathematics Sociology Study Aids


E-Newsletters: Click here to be notified of new titles in your field
Click here to request Desk/Exam copies
Freshman Year Reading
View Our Award Winners
Click here to view our Catalogs
The Portrait of a Lady

The Portrait of a Lady

Upgrade to the Flash 9 viewer for enhanced content, including the ability to browse & search through your favorite titles.
Click here to learn more!

Order Exam Copy
E-Mail this Page Print this Page
Add This - The Portrait of a Lady

Written by Henry JamesAuthor Alerts:  Random House will alert you to new works by Henry James
Introduction by Anita BrooknerAuthor Alerts:  Random House will alert you to new works by Anita Brookner

  • Format: Trade Paperback, 640 pages
  •  
  • Publisher: Modern Library
  • On Sale: February 12, 2002
  • Price: $12.00
  • ISBN: 978-0-375-75919-2 (0-375-75919-0)
Also available as an eBook, hardcover and a paperback.
about this book

One of the great heroines of American literature, Isabel Archer, journeys to Europe in order to, as Henry James writes in his 1908 Preface, “affront her destiny.” James began The Portrait of a Lady without a plot or subject, only the slim but provocative notion of a young woman taking control of her fate. The result is a richly imagined study of an American heiress who turns away her suitors in an effort to first establish—and then protect—her independence. But Isabel’s pursuit of spiritual freedom collapses when she meets the captivating Gilbert Osmond. “James’s formidable powers of observation, his stance as a kind of bachelor recorder of human doings in which he is not involved,” writes Hortense Calisher, “make him a first-class documentarian, joining him to that great body of storytellers who amass what formal history cannot.”

The Portrait of a Lady is entirely successful in giving one the sense of having met somebody far too radiantly good for this world.”—Rebecca West