Far From The Madding Crowd Essay

2012 words - 9 pages

In life it is important that each person thinks rationally in every decision they make, but it is equally important that everyone follows their heart, too. For some people, thinking rationally while following their heart is not an easy task, and it often causes more tragedy than good. Thomas Hardy, a famous British author, repeatedly wrote novels depicting the cross between logical thinking and following one’s heart. For example, his first novel, Far from the Madding Crowd, involves a love circle during a period when women were trying to prove their independence. Bathsheba, the main character, manages a farm on her own and strives to continuously prove her dominance in a male dominant world. She finds herself distracted and stressed due to the fact that three men wish to marry her. Bathsheba significantly wishes to keep her independence, so she turns down the first two men. However, Troy, an untrustworthy womanizer, steals her heart for a moment until she again thinks realistic enough to not fall under his love traps. Far from the Madding Crowd, by Thomas Hardy, depicts the cross between thinking both rationally and irrationally once love is present in one’s life, which is common in all of Hardy’s books through the character development, central themes involving love, and gender confusion.
To begin, Thomas Hardy always seems to incorporate a dominant main character, normally a young beautiful female, in his novels, who changes drastically throughout the story from a number of things including love. In Far from the Madding Crowd specifically, Bathsheba changes in her personality and beliefs continuously due to her uncertain feelings and the dramatic love circle she becomes tangled in. At first, Bathsheba portrays “a vain and superficial character. Her actions reveal her to be powerful and independent, which was not a typical characteristic for women of her time” (Kramer 24). These characteristics give her confidence in herself and her abilities. She also seems to expect the other characters, who are all men, to oblige to her requests and demands completely. This firm confidence allows her to act on impulse and achieve what she wants with ease. By the end of Far from the Madding Crowd, Bathsheba essentially develops into an entirely different character from the effects of the dramatic incidences she faces.
In the early part of the novel, Bathsheba is seen as unpredictable and oftentimes reckless. For example, Bathsheba impulsively sends a marriage proposal to a handsome man, Boldwood, who works on her farm and never seems to notice her. Originally, she intends to send a valentine to a little boy, but in a split second, she irrationally decides to send the letter to Boldwood instead, which reads, "Let's toss, as men do" (Hardy 104). Written on the back of the letter read “Will you marry me?” and although she does not truly want to marry him, she thoughtlessly sends it anyway just to see his reaction. Once he agrees to her...

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