Compare How Hardy Presents Bathsheba Everdene in...

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Compare how Hardy presents Bathsheba Everdene in “Far from the Madding Crowd” and Tess Durbeyfield in “Tess of the d'Urbervilles.” I have decided to write my comparative essay about these two Hardy heroines, Tess and Bathsheba. I wanted to explore how these two female characters created by the same author have such distinct and interesting differences, but also some intriguing similarities. Both are the hearts of their respective novels, and the plots revolve around their personalities and life decisions. Both novels can be summed up as dramas of Victorian country life; both novels also have their share of highs and lows. However “Tess of the d'Urbervilles” is seen as largely as a tragedy and “Far from the Madding Crowd” is seen more as a comedy, mostly because of their very different conclusions. The novels have lots of twists and turns that affect both the women emotionally but also economically and socially within the eyes of the other characters in the books, and also within the minds of readers. The way Hardy writes these two characters allows both the women’s personalities to develop; both Tess and Bathsheba can be seen as strong willed and akin to nature - part of their natural surroundings - as if Hardy sees women as being part of nature, and all which is beautiful within nature. A noticeable thing within both novels it that the heroines seem to go against society’s rules for women at the time. Hardy seems always to be making a point about society and the way it treats women. This leaves his books open to social criticism, which is what they received, especially in “Tess of the d'Urbervilles” which was highly criticized, mostly for the overt sexuality within the book, and especially the scene when Tess is raped by Alec D’Urberville, when it is unsure if Tess resisted enough or was seduced by Alec. For a novel from 1891, it is bitingly
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