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On Thomas Hardy Late Essays and Earlier

by Peter Widdowson

  • ISBN: 9780312210786
  • ISBN10: 0312210787

On Thomas Hardy Late Essays and Earlier

by Peter Widdowson

  • List Price: $69.95
  • Binding: Hardcover
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
  • Publish date: 04/01/1998
  • ISBN: 9780312210786
  • ISBN10: 0312210787
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Description: Peter Widdowson, a leading critic of Thomas Hardy, brings together for the first time essays reflecting both his major critical work over the last 15 years and three entirely new pieces. From the introductory essay, which often an account of the critical refashoning of Hardy, to a "postscript" on the recent film Jude, where more familiar treatments of Hardy are still seen to be at work, the collection represents a sustained and consistent re-reading of both Hardy's fiction and poetry and displays a critical practice which has helped to reshape the contemporary study of Hardy, if not literary studies more generally. The selection includes an early piece in which Widdowson develops the notion of "critiography" as an essential component of any critical practice, as well as recuperative essays on the "minor novels", The Hand of Ethelberta and A Laodicean, which read Hardy's obstrusively arch textuality as strategic rather than errant, while similar re-readings of the major "tragedies", Tess of the d'Urbervilles and Jude the Obscure, controversially present the former as a postmodern text avant la letre and the latter as less tragedy than an anti-realist satire. In addition, there is a deconstructive analysis of the conventional critical representation of "Hardy the Poet".
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