I suppose I could have forgotten The House of Mirth and just shrugged her off as another WASP writer stewing in her class prejudices. But I enjoyed Wharton's work too much, had written about it and even taught her fiction over the years. And The House of Mirth is just too powerful a book to ignore.
What I tell my students is this: Don't read any living American writers. If you're going to read any American writers at all, only read dead ones. That way you can be sure you're not wasting your time.