The Golden Age

by

Joan London

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Elizabeth Ann Character Analysis

Elizabeth Ann is Sister Penny’s daughter from her brief marriage to Alan Penny. The two women have lived apart for several years, with Elizabeth Ann attending teacher’s college and boarding at the house of a friend. Their relationship is cordial but distant; Elizabeth Ann is attracted to the conventional and stable atmosphere at her friend’s house, a lifestyle her unmarried and independent mother neither wants nor is able to provide. By becoming engaged to her friend’s older brother at the end of the novel, Elizabeth Ann seems to attain the life she’s always desired. However, in doing so she distances herself from her mother even more.
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Elizabeth Ann Character Timeline in The Golden Age

The timeline below shows where the character Elizabeth Ann appears in The Golden Age. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
10. The Loving Body
Vocation Theme Icon
Strength, Physicality, and Femininity Theme Icon
...even a long-term affair, and that her main concerns are her work and her daughter, Elizabeth Ann . Because of this, she feels they meet on equal terms, with a mutual desire... (full context)
Vocation Theme Icon
...Alan Penny. However, he was killed at the beginning of the war in 1939, when Elizabeth Ann was four. Without the money to keep their own house, Sister Penny and her daughter... (full context)
Parenthood and Growing Up Theme Icon
Strength, Physicality, and Femininity Theme Icon
...she bequeathed her house to another relative, even though Sister Penny protested that she and Elizabeth Ann wouldn’t have anywhere to live. By now headed to teachers’ college, Elizabeth Ann boarded with... (full context)
15. Christmas
Parenthood and Growing Up Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Solitude Theme Icon
Sister Penny has Christmas lunch with Elizabeth Ann at the house of her friend, Gillian. Sister Penny has never seen her daughter so... (full context)
22. The Concert
Isolation vs. Solitude Theme Icon
...Meyer, noting how it always seems like he’s watching events from a distance. She’s invited Elizabeth Ann to the concert but her daughter isn’t coming, probably because Tim Budd, her boyfriend, doesn’t... (full context)
28. The Hunch
Parenthood and Growing Up Theme Icon
Vocation Theme Icon
Sister Penny informs Meyer that she’s moving to Darwin to accept a new position. Meanwhile, Elizabeth Ann is engaged to be married. Even though Sister Penny knows her daughter has always wanted... (full context)