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"Tess Of The D'urbervilles" By Thomas Hardy

1241 words - 5 pages

One of Thomas Hardy's greatest novels, Tess of the D'Urbervilles, was published in 1891. The novel was set during this 19th century in Wessex, Britain. Tess of the D'Urbervilles reflected the Victorian Age in Britian during the 1800's, as it revovled around one character, Tess Derbeyfield. Tess came into the world, not knowing where and when evil lurked because she grew up in a house of innocence. The world of Alec D'Urberville circulated around evil. When the innocece of Tess and the evilness of Alec collided, harm was done. Alec's forcefull appearance through the lack of morality are described by Tess as, 'a singular force in the gentleman's face, and in his bold rolling eye,' overshadows his wealth from the point when they first met(79). Angel Clare was another character in Tess's life which harmed her, but in a different manner than Alec. Angel's intentions and morality overshadowed his actions. Angel Clare's actions and attitude toward Tess had less severe effects on her because his intentions were good unlike Alec d'Urbervilles.Angel and Alec have very different attitudes toward Tess. Angel first loved Tess for her innocece: 'What a fresh and virginal daughter of Nature that milkmaid is (176).' After he came from Brazil, Angel realized that 'The beauty or ugliness of a character lay not only in its achievements, but in its aims and impulses; its true history lay, not among things done, but among things willed (421).' Angel loved Tess for her intentions in the forest not her actions. The beautiness of Tess does not diminish because of the rape because she did not 'aim' for that to happen. Angel's attitutude toward Tess in not of sexual nature and does not want to take advantage of her. While Angel took Retty, Izz, Marian, and Tess over the pool of water, he had a chance to kiss Tess but 'It reminded Angel that he was somewhat unfairly taking advantage of a accidental position; and he went no further with it (203).' On the other hand, Alec attitude is purely in a sexual nature.From the first time Tess and lec met, he took advantage of her. The first incident showing the a sexual attitude toward Tess is when Alec froce the strawberry into Tess mouth: '...and in slight distress she parted her lips and took it [strawberry) in (81).' Alec's sexual attraction toward Tess continued in the carriage and purposely went fast and she had to 'clutch d'Urberville's rein-arm (95).' This affection towrd Tess was not enough for him and told Tess to 'Hold on around my waist (95),' ' or we shall be thrown out (95).' Alec's attraction became so strong that he had to rape Tess because she did not love him: 'It was that upon this beautiful feminine tissue....there should have been traced such a coarse pattern as it was doomed to receive (119).' Alec's intentions for the rape where all planned and he purposely got the carriage lost in the woods.Angels intentions toward Tess are completely different than Alec's. Angel does not want to harm Tess. For example,...

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