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Word Count: 432
Daisy Miller ubiquitous flirt cavorts around with mysterious Italian romantics and remains contemptuous and ignorant of European social customs during her short stay in the Old World On an intimate level Daisys story is one about a young womans hedonistic adventures in a world where hedonism has no place Daisys self-indulgent pleasure-seeking lifestyle is typical of the American capitalist world and her untimely death is a literary and symbolic necessity--- Daisys death signifies the short-lived nature of gluttonous behavior On a larger scale Henry James Daisy Miller may be interpreted as a portrait of the American character and American destiny boldly adventurous and transient Daisy Miller is a flawed character thus doomed to death in that her nature is ambiguous one can endlessly dispute whether she is a tart or an innocent flirt We are introduced to Daisy when she promenades into the hotels terrace area Her initial aloofness to Winterbourne is symbolic of an American arrogance--- this later disintegrates into America congeniality and amiability as she continues to associate with Winterbourne Henry James establishes Daisy as the mirror of America her youthful capricious and consistently sunny disposition is a subtle analogy to the spirited American capitalism and optimism of the times Daisy is the complete antithesis of the stuffy Mrs Walker whose social traditions are so deeply imbued that it leaves no room for compromise within her Old World character While Mrs Walker represents the graceful sophistication and controlled demeanor of the European aristocracy Daisys boundless energy exudes from her body carelessly spilled as she flounders here frolics there It is precisely this unrestrained energy that leads to Daisys demise If trapped in a productive person Daisys energy would have transformed her previously flawed self into a remarkable brilliant figure However she channels this energy in an entirely different direction and only succeeds in alienating and scandalizing the very people she strives to imitate With nowhere to go Daisys character has nothing
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