The Man of Property begins as a crushing satire on the narrow-minded lawyers, merchants and bankers who made up John Galsworthy's claustrophobic, upper-middle-class world. All that is worst in this acquisitive, soulless breed is personified by Soames Forsyte. Yet far from condemning Soames, Galsworthy goes deep into his psyche; instead of despising this anti-hero, the reader comes to understand and even pity him. It is the power of Galsworthy's characterization that makes the novel so much more than a drawing-room drama.
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