An Analysis of “The American Girl”
In the novel Daisy Miller, Daisy Miller herself represents the typical American Girl of the late 19th century. She is free-spirited and her individuality most likely reflects the social movement of the American middle-class. Daisy is introduced to us as an extremely pretty young American, who is on a European tour with her mother and brother. She is seemingly unaware of customs and traditions of European high society, and very much has issue as they apply to interaction with the opposite sex.
Daisy is frequently seen out with young men un-chaperoned, this creates scandal and gossip. This also clearly portrays Daisy as the novel's protagonist as she goes against the advice of parental units and suitors. Her upfront relationship with Winterbourne reveals her true self, even though it may come off as snarky she is unable to fully mask her immaturity. Winterbourne upon meeting her in Switzerland has difficulty understanding her behavior. “I have more friends in New York than in Schenectady-more gentleman friends; and more young lady friends too," she resumed in a moment. She paused again for an instant; she was looking at Winterbourne with all her prettiness in her lively eyes and in her light, slightly monotonous smile. 'I have always had,' she said, 'a great deal of gentleman's society.'" (p. 10). Specifically from this he cannot determine whether she is naive and innocent or calculating and experienced. Though he does not know he accept what she offers him; that being spontaneity, freedom and love. This is most true from the way Winterbourne reacts post Daisy Millers tragic death. Even more so, Daisy reveals more of herself on her death bed. At the moment of death, Daisy's wish is that Winterbourne should know that she is not engaged with Giovanelli.
Imagery can be seen through the characters of Daisy and Winterbourne most clearly. The protagonist, Daisy Miller, represents the...