Tess of the D'Urbervilles - Wordsworth Classics (Paperback)
  • Tess of the D'Urbervilles - Wordsworth Classics (Paperback)

Tess of the D'Urbervilles - Wordsworth Classics (Paperback)

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Paperback Published: 05/05/1992
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Introduction and Notes by Michael Irwin, Professor of English Literature, University of Kent at Canterbury. Set in Hardy's Wessex, Tess is a moving novel of hypocrisy and double standards. Its challenging sub-title, A Pure Woman, infuriated critics when the book was first published in 1891, and it was condemned as immoral and pessimistic. It tells of Tess Durbeyfield, the daughter of a poor and dissipated villager, who learns that she may be descended from the ancient family of d'Urbeville. In her search for respectability her fortunes fluctuate wildly, and the story assumes the proportions of a Greek tragedy. It explores Tess's relationships with two very different men, her struggle against the social mores of the rural Victorian world which she inhabits and the hypocrisy of the age. In addressing the double standards of the time, Hardy's masterly evocation of a world which we have lost, provides one of the most compelling stories in the canon of English literature, whose appeal today defies the judgement of Hardy's contemporary critics.

Publisher: Wordsworth Editions Ltd
ISBN: 9781853260056

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“A pure woman”

In a world where women are flogged in some countries for being raped, Hardy's novel is still shockingly relevant. Tess Durbeyfield goes to work for a rich family to whom her parents believe they are distantly... More

Paperback edition
15th January 2010
Helpful? Upvote 9

“Tess of the d'Urbervilles”

This was the first Hardy I read, and I've been smitten ever since. The beautiful way it is written, combined with the landscape of Hardy's Wessex makes for a feast of imagery.
A truly unfortunate tragedy... More

Paperback edition
19th March 2011
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“Tess of the D'Urbervilles”

I love Tess because she is a real woman with complex emotions. Hardy has created a believable novel because none of the characters are black and white, Alec is not all bad, Angel is not a saint and Tess is not wholly... More

Hardback edition
22nd November 2008
Helpful? Upvote 8

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