Books That Inspire 2009

A Son at the Front
Edith Wharton

Although Edith Wharton has been a favorite of mine for over 30 years, I only recently became aware of her fictional and non-fictional war writings. Her novel, A Son at the Front, explores the themes of parental love, art, society, privilege, and the conflicted loyalties of Americans living in France during World War I. Ms. Wharton’s novel is written from the perspective of a father, and his friends and family, whose loved ones are fighting at the front. It’s a poignant story of the devastation of war, and the feelings and experiences of the characters are just as germane today as they were almost 100 years ago when the book was written.

Susan T. Marcus-Mendoza
Academic Chair
Department of Human Relations