The Custom of the Country

In popular culture

The September 2012 issue of Vogue included a series of photographs by Annie Leibovitz of scenes from the book, shot at The Mount, Wharton's Berkshire estate. Models included actors Elijah Wood and Jack Huston.[6]

Julian Fellowes has cited The Custom of the Country as an inspiration for his creative work, including Downton Abbey. Upon receiving the Edith Wharton Lifetime Achievement Award in 2012 in Boston, Massachusetts, Fellowes said: "It is quite true that I felt this was my book; that the novel was talking to me in a most extreme and immediate way. I think it's a remarkable piece of writing. In Undine Spragg, Wharton has created an anti-heroine absolutely in the same rank as Becky Sharp, Scarlett O'Hara, or Lizzie Eustace. Undine has no values except ambition, greed and desire, and yet through the miracle of Wharton's writing, you are on her side. That's what's so extraordinary about the book...I decided, largely because of her work, that it was time I wrote something."[7]


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