A novel of manners is work of fiction that re-creates a social world, conveying with finely detailed observation the customs, values, and mores of a highly developed and complex society.
The conventions of the society dominate the story, and characters are differentiated by the degree to which they measure up to the uniform standard, or ideal, of behaviour or fall below it. The scope of a novel of manners may be particular, as in the works of Jane Austen, which deal with the domestic affairs of the English landed gentry of the 19th century, or general, as in the novels of Balzac, which mirror the 19th century in stories dealing with Parisian life, provincial life, private life, public life, and military life.
Notable writers of the novel of manners from the end of the 19th century into the 20th include Henry James, Evelyn Waugh, Jane Austen, Edith Wharton, and John Marquand.
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