Jude the Obscure
- Thomas Hardy
Jude the Obscure - Thomas Hardy - Thomas Hardy's last finished novel and published in 1895, "Jude the Obscure", is widely considered to be his best. Hardy explores all the big issues: class, faith, hope, love, sex. In the process, this seemingly simple story of a doomed love affair transcends the Victorian era in which it is set, making it a timeless classic, a universal tale of longing and despair. "Jude the Obscure" is also one of his most gloomily fatalistic, depicting the lives of individuals who are trapped by forces beyond their control.Jude Fawley, a poor villager, wants to enter the divinity school at Christminster (the University of Oxford). Sidetracked by Arabella Donn, an earthy country girl who pretends to be pregnant by him, Jude marries her but is later deserted. He earns a living as a stonemason at Christminster; there he falls in love with his independent-minded cousin, Sue Bridehead. Out of a sense of obligation, Sue marries the schoolmaster Phillotson, who has helped her. Unable to bear living with Phillotson, she returns to live with Jude and eventually bears his children out of wedlock. Their poverty and the weight of societys disapproval begin to take a toll on Sue and Jude; the climax occurs when Judes son by Arabella hangs...
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