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A Scheeming Heroine

William Makepeace Thackeray was known for his moralistic study of upper and middle class English life. His best known work, VANITY FAIR, has its central character Becky Sharp. She is a perfidious woman who has an insatiable desire to get ahead in the world. She covets the wealth of one man, but when marriage is not feasible she succeeds in a plan to ingratiate herself into the heart of her employer son. Their marriage is not feasible succeeds in a plan to ingratiate herself into the heart of her employer’s son. Their marriage is not a salubrious one and Becky, who lives ostentatiously, from a surreptitious liaison with another man. The affair culminates in a debacle. She is exposed, her husband leaves her, and she must live in penury in Europe. This is the ignominious end for a clever, but misguided woman.

  • vanity – kesombongan, excessive pride in or admiration of one’s own appearance or achievements.
  • perfidious – berkhianat, durhaka, deceitful and untrustworthy
  • ingratiate – mengambil hati, bring oneself into favor with someone by flattering or trying to please them.
  • salubrious – menyehatkan, health-giving; healthy.
  • ostentatious- suka pamer, belagu, characterized by vulgar or pretentious display; designed to impress or attract notice
  • surreptitious – diam-diam, kept secret, esp. because it would not be approved of.
  • debacle – bencana, a sudden and ignominious failure; a fiasco.
  • penury – kemiskinan, extreme poverty; destitution
  • ignominious – memalukan, deserving or causing public disgrace or shame



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