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A Question On Hardy: Where Did His Writings Come From

Born into an agricultural community and untouched by industrialism, Thomas Hardy’s pessimism and determinism is what made his themes and styles stand out from other contemporary writers. According to Zabel, Schopenhaur inspired his pessimistic nature. Because of Schopenhaur’s influence, pessimism was the primary view of his writings. Zabel had also stated the driving force behind his works was majority influenced by Spinoza and his determinism. Hardy’s determinism is what made him categorize his characters and give a definitive plot to his works.(26) Thomas Hardy’s talent for writing and his offensive nature are what made him unique for his contemporary moment. He derived his thoughts from the unknown depths of his mind. Thomas Hardy’s writes always reflected his feeling at that moment in time. Whenever someone offered criticism on his work or gave a skeptical remark towards his work, he would somehow include them in whatever he was busy writing.

Hardy’s ideal reflected his pessimistic way of being. According to Zabel Hardy’s temperament came from:

“Conformist and skeptical tendencies; in his humanism of stoic acquiescence with gifted, Rebellious, or destructive aberrations

Diaz 2

from the human norm as against his sympathy with the rudimentary types and stable humors of the folk.” (25)

This affirms his belief in herd mentality being absolutely ridiculous. He insisted that an intellectual should have his own individualism and should be self-productive.

Hardy tends to attack the public’s normality, usually laughing at their lack of character. His pessimistic nature is what shaped his humanistic views. His confidence and modest temper never suffered Schopenhaur’s exuberance. To challenge Hardy’s critics, he used them as characters with a permanent downfall. Hardy wrote with trial and error impressions. A trial and error impression is one where it is harder to find the true meaning behind the mask that Hardy puts over it. Hardy deliberately made his stories uncomprehendable to first time readers, “on first reading at least, nettles the sympathy, offers stumbling-blocks to attention, and is likely to make the suspension of disbelief a resentful ordeal.”

He never really made his own female characters. He took female characters, usually Heroines, from previous novels and changed their glory into anguish. Guerard had stated hat in the character of Eustacia Vye existed a conflict to create a personality and to create character. Eustacia was the first of the neurotic Hedonists. This is a very definitive look at how Hardy used women as important objects.


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