From Fascination to Listlessness: Hardy’s Depiction of Love



The love which dominates Hardy’s fiction is romantic or sexual. Other kinds of affection are featured, of course, but only in bit parts. The nature of his interest in this habitual theme is unusual — and perhaps unexpected in a writer famous for the creation of individualized characters. In relation to love, as to other aspects of human life, Hardy is concerned to generalize, to diagnose. He’s constantly saying: ‘This is what the thing called love is like. This is how it happens. Is it not strange? Why does it work like this? Why do these delights lead to these miseries?’


Short Story Romantic Love Romantic Passion Passionate Love Morbid Imagination 
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  1. 3.
    Thomas Hardy, The Life and Work of Thomas Hardy, ed. Michael Millgate (London: Macmillan Press, 1984) p. 408.Google Scholar

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© Michael Irwin 1998

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