Critics say that Tess of the d’Urberville is the best and the most famous novel of Thomas Hardy. Maybe it is true and I cannot stand against or for these opinions because I have not read any of his other books. The thing I know for sure is that I was a bit confused with some things when I had finished reading of this book and in the following lines I will try to explain why it was so. In this novel, Thomas Hardy focused on everyday life of ordinary people – farmers and their families. These 19th century people believed that the fate plays an important role in their lives and I felt that this believe in fate was one of the most important believes according to which they were arranging their lives and were refusing a possibility that their acts can affect their future lives. Tess, the main character, was the same and because of her strong believe in faith she found herself in many difficult situations which in result caused her death. At the beginning the author gives us an information which absolutely changes Tess’s life, as the reader will see later. Her father is told that he is the lineal representative of the ancient and knightly family of the d'Urbervilles. He starts to feel that this news could change his poor life and life of his family and that it could be a way how to use it to earn some money. He is a very lazy man and tired of his life who rather spend his time with drinking alcohol than to take care of his family. His wife does not differ from him in many ways. She likes alcohol too because it is for many people also in these days a way how to get free of the terrible reality. In spite of this she is more responsible than her husband is and she is an informal head of the family. But she is a bit naive and she does not understand her daughter Tess, the main protagonist. Speaking about Tess there are also some signs of naivety, which come from her strong belief to other people and from her belief in human good in her early years. One of the things I was confused about was the fact that Tess in her 16 years is presented as a girl who is in my opinion too intellectual and philosophical. She has her opinion to all things that she has created by hearing to other people’s opinions and according to her own thinking. When we realise that Tess lived in poor family, she never left her home, and she visited only 6 classes in school, it seems to me very unreal that she could have this kind of thoughts in these circumstances.
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Thomas Hardy Tess of the d'Urbervilles
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