The setting of Revolutionary Road is mundane, suburban Connecticut in the mid-1950s, in the aftermath of the Second World War. In the novel, Connecticut is referred to as a "place of emptiness and hopelessness", but this was the dawning of a new materialistic age when many American values were changing, including those of work and marriage. Technology was rapidly advancing; the television had recently been introduced, and people who lived in the newly built suburbs were beginning to commute to the cities by train.
Connecticut is New England’s second smallest and southernmost state. It is located in the northeastern United States. Covering an area of approximately 5,018 square miles, it is the 29th most populous state and home to 3.4 million residents. Connecticut is bordered by Massachusetts to the north, Rhode Island to the east, Long Island Sound to the south and New York to the west. The Connecticut River cuts through the centre of the state and flows into Long Island Sound.
Hartford, the state capital, is home to many of the world's insurance companies and, at almost 400 years old, is among the oldest cities in the United States. Other cities in Connecticut include Bridgeport (the largest in the state), New Haven, Stamford, New Britain and Bristol.
Both suburban to New York City and a New England state, Connecticut boasts thriving industry and idyllic landscapes. Its beaches and forested hills lie alongside urban skylines and modern expressways. Yale University, an Ivy League school, is in Connecticut.
With a long history that dates back to early colonial times, Connecticut was extremely influential in the development of the federal government.
Paris, situated on the River Seine, is the capital and largest city in France. In Revolutionary Road, Frank and April Wheeler enthusiastically talk about relocating to Paris in the hope they can escape the problems they've encountered in Connecticut.
Located in the Île-de-France region, Paris is widely considered to be one of the most beautiful and animated cities in Europe, comprising an abundance of iconic cultural landmarks and popular tourist attractions. Perhaps the most renowned are the cathedral Notre Dame de Paris, the Arc de Triomphe and the Eiffel Tower.
Today, Paris enjoys a deserved status as one of the world’s great cities, with a significant influence in fashion, science, politics and the arts. It is also one of the world’s leading business and cultural centres.