Book Cover of The Getting of Wisdom

The Getting of Wisdom

by Henry Handel Richardson

The subject of this book is a young woman: an awkward, insecure, restless and ‘knowing’ child who learns that self-realisation depends on rebellion and escape, but that the latter will first demand at least the semblance of conformity. In telling lies, Laura learns both the astonishing allure of fiction and the social costs of stepping beyond the bounds of propriety, gender, class, and family ties. The novel is only in part a fictionalised account of Richardson’s school years at the Presbyterian Ladies College, Melbourne, where (unlike her fictional counterpart) she was not only academically successful but also an outstanding student of music. Unusual for stories of school-life, The Getting of Wisdom was clearly aimed at a mature readership able to understand irony and a critique of the colonial educational provision of its day, including a determination to preserve sexual ignorance in young women.

Book Details

Language

English

Original Language

English

Published In

1910

Author

Henry Handel Richardson image

Ethel Florence Lindesay Richardson (3 January 1870 – 20 March 1946), known by her pen name Henry Handel Richardson, was an Australian author. The Canberra suburb of Richardson was gazetted in 1...

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