We’re finishing up a section of the Writing New York course devoted to the novel of manners. We include in this section James’s Washington Square, Crane’s Maggie, Wharton’s Age of Innocence, and Cahan’s Yekl, though we note affinities between these novels and both the nineteenth-century plays that Bryan discusses earlier in the course and the work of Walt Whitman. We note, also, the overlap between this tradition of manners and the idea of American literary realism. Setting up Wharton’s connection to realism in lecture the other day, I quoted from Henry James in The Art of Fiction: “One can speak best from one’s own taste, and I may therefore venture to say that the air of reality (solidity of specification) seems to me to be the supreme virtue of the novel, —