Tess of D”Uberville, is a famous work of Thomas Hardy. This work describes the tragedy of Tess. Tess” tragedy coagulates with much more different color of the society and person. It destroys this daughter who was born in nature, and owned man”s simple natural character. The novel”s subtitle calls Tess “a pure woman”, after Tess loses chastity, she kills the man, but the female of this earth is innocent. She has persevering vitality, contending with not only destiny by possessing singly, but society, the families, individuals etc. She has another heavy factor to make this pure and great female head for destruction eventually. In her life, there are three main persons who directly affect her. The first one is Alec, who rapes her and becomes the direct murder. His appearance changed Tess” all. The second one is Angle, who is the accessory and also the best lover of Tess. The third one is Tess herself. Besides, the society and the family affect Tess” whole life largely. Thus, in this paper, the author makes some detailed discussion and analysis of these factors.
Chastity; destiny; murder;
No profound experience, no good work, as the saying goes for hundreds of years. In the novel of Tess of D”Urberuilles, the author introduced a pure girl in his novel, who becomes a murder. And what reduce Tess to be a murder? Is it only because the rape of Alec? And what was the real love? Was the love between Tess and ? If the girl could be more confident, or more courageous, could the result be changed?
In the “first phase” of the novel, Alec D”Urberville takes the advantage of the innocence of Tess. Later, in the third part, she then fell deeply in love with Angle Clare, an affluent agriculturist. Tess soon alienates by revealing her earlier encounter with D”Urberville. Tess of D”Urbervilles demonstrates a great deal about the themes of the novel as well as the character of Tess. The book was supposes to reveal the versatility of Tess” character. However, it also revealed a good deal that helps us understand Hardy”s central theme of the book. It was because the versatility of Tess herself that makes her unique. However, she was a woman of purity and fortitude.
Most of scholars and readers attribute Tess” death to Alec only. But the author of this paper thinks that Angle, Tess, and the society are also the factors, besides Alec.
I. The Famous Work, Tess of D”Urberville, and Its Great Writer
A. The Setting of the Novel
The 19th century is a prosperous period in English literature. There is a most impotent writer, we can”t forget, and He is Thomas Hardy. He is just the author of my subject. Tess of D”Urbervilles is generally regarded as Hardy”s finest novel. This is a brilliant tale of love, betrayal, seduction, duty, sin and rule. At last, this is a tragedy.
In tragedy, the reader, often sympathizes and empathizes with the protagonist who attains “wisdom through suffering.” Tess, who is a so virtuous girl, why did Hardy give Tess, a virtuous girl, a sorrowful destiny? Here, we should turn our eyes to the author—Thomas Hardy. His work reflected the deep changes of social economy, moral and custom, after the capitalism invaded into the England country. Not only, he wrote the people”s tragedy, especially women”s tragedy, and reveals the false of capitalism.
Tess of D”Urbervilles published in 1891, which is the most remarkable work of Hardy. It has displayed one by a short lifetime of heroine, Tess, and pressing tragedy experience, the world tragedy. Facing a bourgeoisie on this account, superstructures such as morality and religion has initiated open one challenge.
Tess of D”Urbervilles is an extraordinarily beautiful book, as well as an extraordinary moving one. It is a tragic tale of a beautiful and innocent peasant grill that is the victim, not only of her Victorian environment, but also of people, including he shiftless parents, her cruel seducer, Alec D”Ubervill and morally rigid husband, Clare, all of them that we can”t omit.
B. The Story of Tess of D”Urberville
This novel caused a heck of a fuss when Thomas Hardy first published it. Originally titled "A Pure Woman", the novel is considered as outrageous for a woman such as Tess to be seen as pure in Hardy's eyes.
Tess Durbeyfield is the peasant daughter of haggler John. John goes to get drunk in celebration and ends up so hammered that he's too ill to take some stuff which he has to sell in the horse and cart. He gets Tess and her little brother to do it instead. Tess falls asleep and the horse ends up in an accident and is killed. As a result, the overly sensitive Tess feels guilty, not realizing it is really John's fault.
Meanwhile her mother Joan has learned that a Lady D'Urberville lives in a neighboring village. She wants to send Tess to claim kin and learning that there is a master D'Urberville, has notions that Tess, being a beautiful girl, will marry him. Tess really doesn”t want to go but does out of guilt of the death of the horse. Alec, the young D'Urberville, a nasty sleazy git who needs to be castrated and lusts after Tess. She goes home after Alec tries to buy her off.
Tess's baby becomes ill, she christens the baby Sorrow in a touching ceremony with her siblings, but the child dies. Not long after, Tess gets work at Talbothays, a large dairy farm a good way away from her home town, and she heads off there. This marks a happy spell in Tess's life. She meets Angle Clare who had been at the spring dance. His father is a parson but Angle doesn't want to be involved in the church and is learning the ways of farming instead. He falls for Tess, who is distraught after deciding not to get married. Angle persists tess fall in love and agree to marry. Tess, feeling unburdened, confesses freaks out and leaves Tess, although by law they are still married, and travels to Brazil.
Tess in the meantime ends up working with some of her old dairymaid friends for a horrible farmer. She runs into Alec who accuses her of tempting him and guilt trips Tess into living with him, because her family is on the verge of homelessness and need the money. Having given up on and realizing his hypocrisy, she agrees. Angle comes home from Brazil having realized the error of his ways and tracks Tess. On finding her, he learns that she thinks it”s too late for them. He takes off and Tess gets into a fight with Alec, which ends in her stabbing him. She runs after, and they spend time together in an old mansion. After wandering the countryside for a while, Tess finds they are at Stonehenge, and feels at home, having been described as a heathen in her home village. She tells that should she be caught she wants him to marry her sister Liza-Lu. The police catch up to her, and shortly after Tess is hanged.
Tess of the D”Urbervilles is a beautifully constructed story, which makes use of the hand of fate. It is the sweet and natural character of Tess that gives the book its exceptionality. The beautifully innocent child never seems to grow into a woman; she retains a dear innocence and vulnerability, which she had from the outset. Her purity of morals and spirit make her the perfect victim for such a small-minded society, and I empathized with her in a way I have done with few characters in novels. It is difficult not to fall in love with her quiet courage, although it is easy to feel exasperated with her intense passivity. Her true, deep love for is another thing, which makes her endearing. As Tess notes when asks if he loves her more than Tess did, no-one could because she would lay down her life for.
The three-dimensional Angle is another attractive character. Initially you want to like him and by the later chapters you begin to empathies with him despite his rather rash and inconsiderate treatment of his wife. It is clear that he loves her, but it”s also fair to say that he doesn”t feel the intense love that Tess does, given that he was so willing to treat her cruelly and with such narrow-minded hypocrisy.
Ⅱ. The Factors of the Tess” Death
A. Direct Murder
When we read the book at the first time, it is easy to find the murder of Tess. Everything can be put on the Alec”s head. If he didn”t rape Tess, she can”t become so pity. It is not difficult to see that Alec is a playboy. At the first appearance in the scenes, his dissolute made Tess not pleased. But he is a duck in fact, he own good manner, which made Tess” parent misunderstand. In chapter 3, a young man appeared in the garden. He looked about twenty-four, tall and dark, with full red lips and a black moustache curled at the ends. “Well, my beauty, what can I do for you? ”he said, looking interestedly at her. As a bourgeoisie gilded youth, Alec is the vicious incarnation of this novel. It is formed distinct contrast exactly with Tess, who symbolizes the kindhearted and purify. But Alec put it into her mouth. He put roses in to her hair and filled her basket with strawberries and flowers. He gave her food to eat, and watched her, while she quietly smoked a cigarette. She looked more adult and womanly than she really was. Alec could not take his eyes off her. She did not know as she smiled innocently at the flowers that behind the cigarette smoke were the cause of future sorrow in her life. At the last, he actually wrapped the coat of religion, and be further intensified commit primes. At the hardy”s time, there were so many people using religion to cheat other people, it is the hypocritical. Furthermore, it is highly entertaining even while it does not lay everything out in an easy-to-follow story, and even the climax moves so quickly that it is easy to leave the theater and not know exactly what happened. In chapter 19, she said, “it”s too late! Because you persuaded me, you with your fine words! As you did when you seduced me! You told me he would never come back! But he did! And you helped my family—that”s how you persuaded me so cleverly. But when I believed you and came to live with you, he came back! And now I have lost him a second time, and this time for ever! He will hate me now!” she turned her tear-stained face and Mrs. Brooks could see how she was suffering. And he is dying; he looks as if he”s dying! It will be my fault if he dies! You have destroyed my life and his! I can”t bear it, I can”t! The man spoke sharply, and after that there was silence. Just then she noticed a mark on ceiling. It seemed to be spreading. It was red, and when she stood on the table and touched it, it looked like blood. She ran up to listen at the bedroom door again. The dead silence was broken only by a regular drip, drip, drip. She ran wildly put into the street and begged a man she knew to come back with her. Together they hurried upstairs and pushed open the bedroom door. The breakfast lay untouched on the table, but the large knife was missing. They found it in Alec d”Urberville”s heart. He laid on the bed, pale, fixed, dead, still bleeding. Soon the news spread all over Sandbourne that Mrs. Brooks” guest had been killed by his young wife. Yet, it also suggests, in good surrealist fashion, that “knowing”is not everything, that “seeing”and “believing” are good options. From these examples, how can we find the benefit of the religion? It is seems that many people believe the Buddhism like me in China. It easy made us doubts the foreign religion. With this doubt, I went to library. There is a book named THE PROPHET, which is written by Caly, who is Lebanese. The title page is “the first philosophy in poem”. There is a unit in this book, ON RELIGION. An old priest said, speak to us of religion. And he said: Have I spoken this day of aught else? Is not religion all deeds and all reflection? And that which is neither deed nor reflection, but a wonder and a surprise ever spring in the soul, even while the hands hew the stone or tend the loom? Who can separate his faith from his action, or his belief from his occupations? Who can spread his hours before him, saying,“This for God and this for myself: This for my soul, and this other for my body?” All your hours are wings that beat thrush space from self to self. He wears his morality but as his best garment was better naked. The wind and the sun will tear no holes in his skin. And he who defines his conduct by ethics imprisons his songbird in a cage. The freest song comes not through bars and wires. And he to whom worshipping is a window, to open but also to shut, has not yet visited the house of the house of his soul whose windows are open from dawn to dawn. Your daily life is your temple and your religion. Whenever you enter into it take with you your all. Take the plough and the forge and the mallet and the lute. The things you have fashioned in necessity or for delight. For in reverie you cannot rise above your achievements nor fail lower than your failures. And take with you all men: For in adoration you cannot fly higher than their hopes nor humble yourself lower than their despair. And if you would know God be not therefore a solver of riddles. Rather look about you and you shall see him playing with your chidden. And look into space, you shall see him walking in the cloud, outstanding his arms in the lightning and descending in rain. You shall see him smiling in flowers, the rising and waving his hands in trees. In this poem, I find this sentence,“he who wears his morality but as his best garment were better naked.”B. Accessory
After scanning the cause of Alec, people should put their eyes to other ones. It is Angle”s turn. Many people will think that Angle is also a casualty. He is another tragic personage image in this book. He is from a middle class family. He has his idea and ambition. Neither Angle Clare nor his family has originally chosen farming as a profession for him. When he was a boy, people admired his great qualities. Now he is a man, no particular purpose in life. He is unwilling to the field serves for the God against him self”s will. And he hopes to do something for the people. Angle explains that in fact he does not in fact wish to enter the Church like his brothers, because the Church”s views are too strict and do not allow free thinking. It makes him to be treachery of his family and religion. His open mind made him to be loved with a country girl, which is not fit for her family. is the angle in Tess” heart. His love to Tess owns the purity of first love, fervor and impressments. He is deeply dump aged by Tess” puerility. Angle thinks “What a fresh and pure daughter of nature that dairymaid is!” He seems to remember something about her, which brings him back into happy time in the past, before his decision made his life in dilemma. This memory makes him pay more attention to Tess than the other dairymaids. In his eyes, Tess is the embodiment of perfect. He is consciousness with respect attitude and solemn marriage to get contact with Tess. After refused by Tess, he insists to wait. His determination is decisive. Clare is not depressed by Tess” refusal. And he thinks that Tess would finally accept him. But in the night of the marriage, after known the past of Tess, Angle, the man always open mind, was failed into the deeply pain. He was in afflicted from spirit. He would believe what she said is bogus. Times and times he asks Tess to deny the truth. And he didn”t give her chance to explain that Tess was the casualty. When he sued these were never changed, he chooses escape, and he can”t understand her. After Tess told her story, everything is changed. Clare stirred the fire. It was unnecessary, but he felt he had to do something. He had not really taken in the whole story in its full horror; his face was like an old man”s. He made uncertain movements, because everything in his head was vague and uncertain. He could not make himself think clearly. “Tess! Can I believe this? Are you mad perhaps? My wife, my Tess—you aren”t mad, are you?” He was talking but could not think at the same time. His brain seemed to have stopped working. He turned away from her. Tess followed him and stood there staring at him with dry eyes. Then she went down on her knees beside him. In the chapter14, it is clear. He was relieved to see her sleeping deeply. And yet he felt he alone had the whole worry of what action to take, and the responsibility for her life as well as his. He turned away from her door, and then turned back again, pulled but his love foe her. But his eye was caught by a painting on the wall of one of Tess” ancestors, a proud fierce woman, who looked as if she hated and wanted to deceive all men. He thought she and Tess looked alike. That was enough to stop him, and he went downstairs to his lonely bed. He looked calm and cold, dull of self-control. His face showed he had fought against passion and won, but did not like being the winner. He still found it difficult to accept that Tess, the pure village maiden, was not what she seemed. How unexpected life could be! He put out the candle. The night came in, unconcerned and uninterested, the night which had swallowed up his happiness. It seems like a sentence of Excellence Is Never An Accident. The right to be heard is constitutionally guaranteed. The right to be listened to must be earned. But Tess didn”t realize what she said is unforgiving. In the chapter15, he was escaped. Next morning he seemed to remember nothing of the night”s experiences, and Tess did not refer to his sleepwalking. They finished packing and left the farmhouse, where they had hoped to be so happy. After driving some distance stopped the carriage to get down and continue on foot. Tess was going further on in the carriage. He spoke seriously to her as they separated. He said, I am not angry with you, but I cannot bear to live with you at the moment. I will try to accept it. But until I come to you, you should not try to come to me. The punishment seemed a heavy one to Tess. Had she really deserved this? Some one said that Angle”s idea is the traditionally idea of bourgeois. But I think this saying is dogmatically. On this fair, he is also the casualty. His love to Tess is so purity, but this entire thing was tired by the cruel fact. The irony and hypocrisy of Angle”s reaction are indicated by the title of this section. It is a classic statement of society”s double standard, which judges men”s sexual behavior leniently and punishes women for the same behavior. Why is Angle unable to forgive her when she just bestowed the gift of forgiveness on him? Is her sexual experience the cause or his character and misconceptions? Does her confession necessitate their separation, or do they part because of particular traits each has? Could Tess have averted the parting by behaving differently and thereby changed her destiny? Or is her destiny unchangeable? Is she victim, self-victimizer, or both? Tess' confession destroys Angle's idea that Tess is a virginal, simple child of the soil. As a result, he cannot accept the fact. Preferring his fanciful love, he is “mothering his affection for her”. At the same time that he is disappointed in his vision of her innocence and lowly status, Angle blames her for the family background which he previously thought it would make her acceptable to respectable middle class society. He is self-contradictory because his rejection of society”s values is superficial. At a deeper level, he still believes in society”s moral laws and social code. Nevertheless, he does love Tess. His grief in laying Tess in the stone coffin clearly expresses his love, this action also symbolizes his belief that it”s really his beloved, his ideal of his beloved, no longer exists. Earlier in the evening he is torn by the desire to follow her to their bedroom. Is it a chance or even a fate operating in this incident? Or is Hardy indulging his taste for melodrama and carrying coincidence too far? Rejecting Tess at this point Angle would face to assume a “terribly sterile expression”. Thinking and clinging to society”s values which cut him off from nature and, of course, he has just come from the lush, fertile From Valley where the appetite for joy carried him along, yet he is “terribly sterile.” Choosing intellect over nature or the emotional life destroys the life force; Angle “was becoming ill with thinking; eaten out with thinking, withered by thinking; scourged out of all his former pulsating, flexuous domesticity”. The repetition emphasizes the importance of this idea and expresses the intensity of Hardy”s feelings about Angle”s intellectuality. Hardy offers a somewhat contradictory judgment of Angle”s reliance on the mind: Some might risk the odd paradox that with more animalism he would have been the nobler man. We do not say it. Yet Clare”s love was doubtless ethereal to a fault, imaginative to impracticability. Though Hardy is reluctant to say that being more open to the physical or sexual would make Angle a better man, he is critical of Angle”s over-reliance on abstractions and imagination.
The entire thing is curl, how a girl can carry on? As Angle watches Tess” coach slowly move up the hill, he hopes that she will look back at him. Too devastated to move, she does not look out. Is this one more lost opportunity for reconciliation? If so, is the force of circumstances against them? Someone will say it”s a mournful story of love. What made this love beginning? Beautiful smile! once we begin to love each other naturally we want to do something. It is what the true love in the novel is. It is paying put bravely without any return. When the world is full of love, the world is perfect.
C. Tess Herself
Our dramatis persona, Tess, is a pure woman. But her final is so pity. It is her destiny. Why people so curl to say that? But easy exactly as pure lamb get the wrong path, one kind, her pure kindhearted be destroyed easy to be wrecked by society is devoured by ferocious wolf. Her disinterest and the spirit sacrificing oneself, give vicious influence chance. But, frankness that her oneself running after purifies also makes her and happiness fail to meet Angle by a narrow chance. When her jade was died, as a girl, how can she to support this big family? But when the village people arrived at church they noticed her and started whispering to each other.
From two aspects we can see analysis character of Tess. First, she has all the innocence and purity that the nature has endowed with. We can see this point from her kind, selfless to her parents and her friends, and her loyalty to love. The second, after her unfortunate encounter, she becomes a complicated woman, and she no longer endures all things silently. She struggles against Alec and unjust treatment, contempt”s and criticizes hypocritical religion. It seems that Tess is unyielding to evils. At last, the conclusion is that the real cause of Tess”s tragedy lies in the wicked nature and hypocritical morality of the bourgeois society.
Reading the novel, people are impressed by the title page that Tess is “a pure woman”. It is the phrase that caused so much uproar when the first edition of the novel is firstly published. It has created problems for readers and critics ever since the novel was completed. The title offends many on moral grounds, for whom Tess is a ruined, immoral woman. Others are puzzled intellectually; what is Hardy”s basis for calling her pure? It calls not only the roll the novel subject, but also the tragedy having expounded her further. The subtitle defends in various ways. One of the most common defenses is the suggestion that Hardy is showing that the traditional Christian view equating virtue and purity with virginity is wrong. Another common explanation of the subtitle is that Hardy distinguishes between the act and the intention. This is a distinction Angle Clare finally makes in the novel. Or is it possible that Tess is pure in her character as Apostolic Charity that her soul remains unstained regardless of what happens to her body?
Her pure is kindhearted and moral character and is unfolding in her conduct dealing with affairs and uncompromising honesty to amatory. The contemporary reviewers are unwilling to admit who is not chaste, is pure. But in fact, the book is to tell reader how a pure and innocent girl is driver us the cruel society to the wall and finally becomes the sacrifice of the society. From the beginning to the end, what we can read is her purity and her straggle with the social driven force. In the end, when Tess is sentenced to be hanging, there”s one question in our minds. She knew what they were saying and realized she could come to church no more. So she spent almost all her time in her bedroom, which she shared with the children. Form here she watched the wind, the snow, the rain, beautiful sunsets and full moons, one after another. People began to think she had gone away. She only went out after dark, to walk in the woods and the fields. She was not afraid of the dark or the shadows; it was people she was anxious to avoid. After joking by the other girls, she actually jumped to Alec”s carriage. It is just her chartless make her fail to the evil hand. We can say that she is chartless, but the more is childish. If she owns more experiences, she can own more consciousness of safety, the result is changeable. Although the village people had almost forgotten her trouble; she decided she could never be really happy in Marlott. Trying to claim relationship with the rich d”Urbervilles seemed so foolish and shameful to her. She thought her family would never be respected there again. Even now she felt hope rise within her, hope of finding a place with no family connections and no memories. In escaping from Marlott she intended to destroy the past. Perhaps now she could make up foe her crime against society. She has been really not unfamiliar to him, she has been short of but more keeping watch but on now, this is that she is naive at the same time; also being unable to keep silent is that she is short of one aspect knowing that to affairs of human life in the character or consciousness in saying. When she told Angle the past, she also expresses her recurrence. The tradition chastity concept in her soul go ahead is having stayed deeply brand. She feels from committing a crime being thinking of one kind forever after losing chastity, the compunction feels, the inferiority complex, has come across this kind of problem once and, showing weak aspect. Once and once refusing Angle, it is just this psychology. During the period of he cannot forgive her, her inferiority complex displays mainly his slave who obvious, unceasingly, requests that making an explanation, expresses her willingness compose even. At the second half of this novel, she did Alec”s mistress. A new phase begins in Tess” life when she meets Alec again. His pursuit as much as Angle”s rejection determines the course her life now takes. She had hoped, as women do, that living together for a time would break down his coldness. Being near him every day was her only hope of winning him back. Is arbitrary coincidence at work in her stopping at just the time and just the place where Alec is speaking? Is it coincidence that she stands in the sun so that he notices her movement when she leaves? Is their meeting again inevitable because life follows a pattern or occurs in cycles? Or is it inevitable because her personal past with Alec cannot be escaped in society? The title of this section applies, ironically enough, to both Alec and Angle. She still asked, May I write to you? I agree to the conditions, because you know best. Only don”t make it too much for me bear! That was all she said. If she had sobbed or fainted or begged him, he would probably have given way. But she made it easy for him. Due to the influence of a stranger (the Reverend Clare), Alec undergoes a religious conversion and becomes a preacher. Due to the influence of a stranger, Angle undergoes an intellectual and emotional conversion, which allows him to see Tess” purity and innocence, and he returns to England and to Tess. Alec relapses to his former sensual, womanizing self when he sees Tess. It is just her chartless make her fail to the evil hand. We can say that she is chartless, but the more is childish. If she owns more experiences, she can own more consciousness of safety, the result is changeable.
Studying a novel, we cannot ignore its social background. Why as Tess” girlish purity lost? Why does the wrong man take the wrong woman? Why do the bad so often ruin the good? Why is beauty damaged by ugliness? Thousands of years of philosophy cannot give us the answers to these questions. The society, the family are woven having moved towards this big tragedy nets. Her family is the stratum belonging to no well-liked rural area being placed in that time. The family has already arrived at a brink of collapse, her father also take his life as playing game, puts in but always on Tess' body with the difficult task. She loses her chaste, society is all chastity concept at every step incisive the life being affecting her, the ideological root-cause having become tragic ultimately. At the end, she drops every concept, and killed Alec. So there is another saying, it is just the family and the society made her like that.
When I analyzed these courses, I just found it is the destiny. If Tess lived in 21st century, can she get the different plight? I don”t think so. I don”t think she is so luckily. Day and days, we saw the law case on TV. There someone was raped; there someone was died of love… Why are there so many cases? The social is more developed. We need consciousness. The consciousness for woman! Actually, I am not feminism. But we really need adamancy for ourselves. Because of we want to control our destiny.
Tess of D”Uberville, this work is full of sympathy and helpless. People analyses the factors of Tess” death from different parts of her life. The author of this paper takes more attention to Tess” lover. In fact, everything would change, if there is no Alec, who raped her. Because it is a reality, it is really happened. What may only change is the attitude to this fair. A lot of reflection was left by Hardy thorough his creation of Tess” tragedy. It seemed that Tess could never escape the wrongs of the past, either socially or personally. Tess was kind-hearted pure and brave and had acute sense of responsibility and strong sense of moral duty. Form this paper we can see that Tess moved away from her village. It seems that she wants to change her lifestyle. But it is just because Angle”s departure, Tess comes to her awful dilemma once again. To another part of her life, the society and her family are also the main factor to her death. From the tragic story of Tess” short life, we can see in a deeper sense that it is the capitalist society of the time that has ruined her. Living in a society overwhelmed by capitalist Law, religion and state apparatus, Tess, a poor peasant, inevitably leads a tragic life and finally goes to her collapse. Thus facing so many cases, it seems that Tess” tragedy is unavoidable.
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