Tess of the d'Urbervilles

How did the novel cause a lot of controversy?
-the events that occured in the book, e.g. **** or seduction? and also illegitimate children.
- some themes were argued if they were appropriate at the time.
- many critics treated Tess like a real person.
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When was the novel published?
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How did people deal with the topics in the novel?
A lot of people ignored it, so they did not need to do anything, but Hardy felt that matter needed to be dealt with (hence the serialisation)
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Where was the novel set?
It is set in fictional Wessex in Dorset
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Name 4 key context points
- period of industrialisation, and social change
- movement from traditional rural ways to modernisation and machinery
- written at a time of religious questioning
- novel provided images of pastoral life
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What was Hardy influenced by?
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How did he write about Tess?
As a somewhat distanced observer; we often see her as being viewed from above. It is almost like we are watching her.
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Why is the novel considered a tragedy?
As readers we have a fear of the unfolding brutal plot- the reader is tormented by shades of alternative worlds in which Tess and Angel might possibly live well in.
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It is a ... novel?
Bildungsroman novel- youth into adulthood and is over a large time scale
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What does 'phase' mean?
It means a certain section of someone's life or experience something you are going through- so a stage in your life.
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Summarise the events in Phase the First- The Maiden
In the first phase, is the catalyst. 'Sir John' learns of his 'nobility.' Marlott is introduced as a significant setting. Prince the family horse dies and Tess feel that it is her fault so seeks help for her family with the d'Urberville family. Alec conti
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Why do you think it is called "The Maiden"?
Maiden means a young girl ready to be married, all pure.
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What does satire mean?
The use of humour, irony, exaggeration, or ridicule to expose and criticize people's stupidity.
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Summarise Chapter 1
While walking home on a May evening, Jack Durbeyfield meets Parson Tringham, who tells him that he is descended from 'the ancient and knightly family of the d'Urbervilles.' Jack has been drinking and wants to celebrate. He sends a boy for a carriage and h
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What is the pastoral?
- see all stages of life
-traditionally, pastoral literature explore rural life and shepherds, idyllic landscapes in which people are free from the complexities and corruptions of city life
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What is anti-pastoral?
- pastoral conventions are deployed or alluded to, im order to declare the limitations of those conventions.
- e.g. if rural pastoral life suggests living in the countryside has only positive benefits, anti-pastoral will proclaim that it is harsh and farm
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Summarise Chapter 2
- the village women are celebrating the coming of Spring. Tess is embarrassed by Jack's behaviour.
- the women begin dancing. They are watched by three young gentlewomen, one of whom, Angel, decides to join. Angel does not dance with Tess but then regrets
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Define paganism
A number of spiritual and religious beliefs. They believed in multiple Gods and Goddesses. They focus on nature, rather than doctrine. It had been around since the 4th century- it was derogatory.
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What is a May Day Dance?
-May Day is celebrated at the start of Summer.
-1st of May if a pagan fertility festival.
-Dancing around is ancient fertility rite.
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What is the Cerne Abbas Giant?
An important part of Dorset folklore, carved into a field. Locals would have put the Maypole into it- childless couples would dance around it to promote fertility.
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What is the walking-club?
It was seen as a sisterhood and the women are pushed into it by society. All the young girls look the same in white clothes.
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Summarise Chapter 3
- Tess returns home. Her mother, Joan, passes on the news of the family's good fortune and also tells Tess that Jack's health is failing. Joan joins Jack celebrating at the local pub Rolliver's.
- Tess is left to look after her siblings. She gets bored of
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Define determinism
A philosophical theory that all events, as well as moral choices, are determined by existing causes.
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Define fatalism
A philosophical belief that events are fixed in advance so that human beings are powerless in order to alter them.
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Summarise Chapter 4
Joan tells Tess to go to Trantridge, as she remembers there is a rich woman called d'Urberville. Tess arrives at Rolliver's and escorts her parents back who are drunk. Tess and Abraham take Jack's place and offer to drive the beehives to the market. They
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When was the novel published?



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How did people deal with the topics in the novel?


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Where was the novel set?


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Name 4 key context points


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