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8. Fate or Chance or Justice?
About this Lecture
In this module, we continue from where we left off in the previous module, thinking about Hardy’s world-view in this novel. Why do things happen the way they do? Is it fate? Accident? Or something else? In particular, we focus on what Angel calls “the ache of modernism”—and how Tess and those around her achieve meaning in life, despite the metaphysical gloominess that this phrase implies.
In this course, Ms Karen Hewitt (University of Oxford) explores Thomas Hardy’s Tess of the D’Urbervilles. As we move through the course, we think about the social context of the novel—particularly Victorian ideas about female sexuality—and the ways in which Hardy approached, evaded and dealt with these problems in his early portrayal of Tess. After that, we think about Hardy’s poetic imagery, the way he sees the world, his attitudes to nature and man’s impact on the world around him, before ending with religion and the meaning of life—particularly the response of Tess and those around her of what Tess calls “the ache of modernism”.
A tutor in Literature at Oxford University Department for Continuing Education. Karen Hewitt MA, MBE (Oxon) teaches regularly at Oxford University Department for Continuing Education, and also in Russian universities. She has written books and edited anthologies on English Literature including Understanding English Literature.
Cite this Lecture
Hewitt, K. (2018, August 15). Hardy: Tess of the D'Urbervilles - Fate or Chance or Justice? [Video]. MASSOLIT. https://massolit.io/courses/hardy-tess-of-the-d-urbervilles/fate-or-chance-or-justice
Hewitt, Karen. "Hardy: Tess of the D'Urbervilles – Fate or Chance or Justice?." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 15 Aug 2018, https://massolit.io/courses/hardy-tess-of-the-d-urbervilles/fate-or-chance-or-justice