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Re: TESS: The Masterpiece Classics Film

As I recall that scene actually happened in the book, I did think it was needlessly cruel to Mercy Chant but I also can connet with why Angel would say it. He was bitter at God for letting Alec hurt Tess and then again when he left Tess because if Alec's actions.
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Re: TESS: The Masterpiece Classics Film

P.S. -- I also would have left out "lower class" in Angel's recharacterization of Tess -- he did, after all, still consider taking one of the other milkmaids with him, so it is not clear to me that even then his issue with Tess was one of class.

 

I think that makes the point.  He rejected the upper class insipidness of Mercy for the more earthy, lower class realism of the milkmaids.  He chose Tess, but he could have chosen any of the others and made the same point.  

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Re: TESS: The Masterpiece Classics Film

Eman -- I think we both know that we shall never agree about this characterization of Tess -- you would probably have long ago disqualified me on any jury before which which you might have defended Alec from charges of sexual harrassment.   (I would not, however, use the term "brutal physical rape" and I might pause to consider "unwilling seductee," i.e., if "semi-" were dropped.)

 

I understand that we disagree, but still don't understand what you do with the several passages in which she seems pretty clearly, at least to me, to acknowledge that it was a mistake on her part.  Being totally unwilling does not constitute making a mistake.  

 

Nor do I understand what you do with Tess saying to Alec, as she is returning home,

If I had gone for love o' you, if I had ever
sincerely loved you, if I loved you still, I should not so loathe and
hate myself for my weakness as I do now! ... My eyes were dazed by
you for a little, and that was all."


What weakness?  What dazed?

 

How do you make those words consistent with unwillingness?

 

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Re: TESS: The Masterpiece Classics Film

I have a feeling that even Hardy does not know exactly what happened.

Everyman wrote:

Eman -- I think we both know that we shall never agree about this characterization of Tess -- you would probably have long ago disqualified me on any jury before which which you might have defended Alec from charges of sexual harrassment.   (I would not, however, use the term "brutal physical rape" and I might pause to consider "unwilling seductee," i.e., if "semi-" were dropped.)

 

I understand that we disagree, but still don't understand what you do with the several passages in which she seems pretty clearly, at least to me, to acknowledge that it was a mistake on her part.  Being totally unwilling does not constitute making a mistake.  

 

Nor do I understand what you do with Tess saying to Alec, as she is returning home,

If I had gone for love o' you, if I had ever
sincerely loved you, if I loved you still, I should not so loathe and
hate myself for my weakness as I do now! ... My eyes were dazed by
you for a little, and that was all."


What weakness?  What dazed?

 

How do you make those words consistent with unwillingness?

 


 

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Re: TESS: The Masterpiece Classics Film


I have a feeling that even Hardy does not know exactly what happened.

 


:smileyvery-happy:  Laurel -- Given the number of times that he apparently re-wrote, he seems to have at least experimented with several interpretations and possibilities.

 

Eman  -- I understand the logic you put forth with the quotations you select.  I will only comment that in society that places so much responsibility on the woman to "say no", I do not find Tess's self reprisal at all surprising.  (As you probably well know, even today many battered women blame themselves in situations where a more objective counselor may try to help them understand other possibilities.)  As for being "dazed," that could as easily refer to her risking more trust to Alec by just going with him than she could extend trust for her safety to her other companions that night.  Indeed, her misplaced trust probably contributed to her self loathing and sense of weakness, as self reliant as she tried to be.

 

(As we try to attribute "real" motives to fictional characters!)


Laurel wrote:
I have a feeling that even Hardy does not know exactly what happened.

Everyman wrote:

Eman -- I think we both know that we shall never agree about this characterization of Tess -- you would probably have long ago disqualified me on any jury before which which you might have defended Alec from charges of sexual harrassment.   (I would not, however, use the term "brutal physical rape" and I might pause to consider "unwilling seductee," i.e., if "semi-" were dropped.)

 

I understand that we disagree, but still don't understand what you do with the several passages in which she seems pretty clearly, at least to me, to acknowledge that it was a mistake on her part.  Being totally unwilling does not constitute making a mistake.  

 

Nor do I understand what you do with Tess saying to Alec, as she is returning home,

If I had gone for love o' you, if I had ever
sincerely loved you, if I loved you still, I should not so loathe and
hate myself for my weakness as I do now! ... My eyes were dazed by
you for a little, and that was all."


What weakness?  What dazed?

 

How do you make those words consistent with unwillingness?

 



 

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Re: TESS: The Masterpiece Classics Film

Postscript:  If Tess had ever been truly attracted to Alec, I find it more difficult (but not impossible) to believe that she could have killed him.

 

To me, it is fascinating to contrast this story with Rebecca.

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Re: TESS: The Masterpiece Classics Film

I will only comment that in society that places so much responsibility on the woman to "say no", I do not find Tess's self reprisal at all surprising.

 

That's a fair point.  OTOH, in a society in which virginity was as valued and important as it was then, one would think that she would not have allowed it to be taken without more struggle than we are given any information about.  Neither one of them apparently had any scratches, torn clothing, etc.  

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Re: TESS: The Masterpiece Classics Film

Oh, gosh, I think just the opposite.  After all, wasn't that just the motive alleged for Harriet Vane to have killed her lover in Strong Poison?   I think it would have been easier to kill him if she had had feelings for him and he had mocked her about her husband coming back.  If she had no feelings, she could just have left.   After all, hell hath no fury ...


Peppermill wrote:

Postscript:  If Tess had ever been truly attracted to Alec, I find it more difficult (but not impossible) to believe that she could have killed him.

 

To me, it is fascinating to contrast this story with Rebecca.


P.S.  I do agree with your comment about trying to apply human motives to fictional characters. But isn't it fun anyhow? 

 

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Re: TESS: The Masterpiece Classics Film

Hardy is not Murakami.

 

 


Everyman wrote:

I will only comment that in society that places so much responsibility on the woman to "say no", I do not find Tess's self reprisal at all surprising.

 

That's a fair point.  OTOH, in a society in which virginity was as valued and important as it was then, one would think that she would not have allowed it to be taken without more struggle than we are given any information about.  Neither one of them apparently had any scratches, torn clothing, etc.  


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Re: TESS: The Masterpiece Classics Film

[ Edited ]

That's part of why I think its fun to contemplate how one might present this novel to young men!

 

For all my consternation about the behavior of Alec, I clearly am of the mind that he did not deserve his "punishment."  Now, unlike Maxim in Rebecca, Tess did have to face the punishment of the legal system.

 


Everyman wrote:

Oh, gosh, I think just the opposite.  After all, wasn't that just the motive alleged for Harriet Vane to have killed her lover in Strong Poison?   I think it would have been easier to kill him if she had had feelings for him and he had mocked her about her husband coming back.  If she had no feelings, she could just have left.   After all, hell hath no fury ...


Peppermill wrote:

Postscript:  If Tess had ever been truly attracted to Alec, I find it more difficult (but not impossible) to believe that she could have killed him.

 

To me, it is fascinating to contrast this story with Rebecca.


P.S.  I do agree with your comment about trying to apply human motives to fictional characters. But isn't it fun anyhow?


Message Edited by Peppermill on 02-01-2009 12:37 AM
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Re: TESS: The Masterpiece Classics Film

[ Edited ]

Peppermill wrote:

Eman  -- I understand the logic you put forth with the quotations you select.  I will only comment that in society that places so much responsibility on the woman to "say no", I do not find Tess's self reprisal at all surprising.  (As you probably well know, even today many battered women blame themselves in situations where a more objective counselor may try to help them understand other possibilities.)  As for being "dazed," that could as easily refer to her risking more trust to Alec by just going with him than she could extend trust for her safety to her other companions that night.  Indeed, her misplaced trust probably contributed to her self loathing and sense of weakness, as self reliant as she tried to be.

 

(As we try to attribute "real" motives to fictional characters!)


Laurel wrote:
I have a feeling that even Hardy does not know exactly what happened.

Everyman wrote:

Eman -- I think we both know that we shall never agree about this characterization of Tess -- you would probably have long ago disqualified me on any jury before which which you might have defended Alec from charges of sexual harrassment.   (I would not, however, use the term "brutal physical rape" and I might pause to consider "unwilling seductee," i.e., if "semi-" were dropped.)

 

I understand that we disagree, but still don't understand what you do with the several passages in which she seems pretty clearly, at least to me, to acknowledge that it was a mistake on her part.  Being totally unwilling does not constitute making a mistake.  

 

Nor do I understand what you do with Tess saying to Alec, as she is returning home,

If I had gone for love o' you, if I had ever
sincerely loved you, if I loved you still, I should not so loathe and
hate myself for my weakness as I do now! ... My eyes were dazed by
you for a little, and that was all."


What weakness?  What dazed?

 

How do you make those words consistent with unwillingness?

 



 


Good Lord, are we back to this again? :smileyindifferent: 

 

I read it the same way as Peppermill (especially the part I have bolded).  Tess was blaming herself for accepting Alec's ride that night as being the catalyst for what happened to her.  Her behavior during that ride certainly does not seem like the behavior of a young woman who is ready and willing to be seduced.  She objects strenuously to his even putting his arm around her waist in order to keep her steady on the horse, and wants him to let her down to walk home.  She also offers to leave her employ.

 


Everyman wrote:

I will only comment that in society that places so much responsibility on the woman to "say no", I do not find Tess's self reprisal at all surprising.

 

That's a fair point.  OTOH, in a society in which virginity was as valued and important as it was then, one would think that she would not have allowed it to be taken without more struggle than we are given any information about.  Neither one of them apparently had any scratches, torn clothing, etc


Now, that made me laugh out loud!!!  How do you know - were you there?  You say we are not told about a struggle; neither are we told about acquiescence.  To be merciful to Tess, Hardy has effectually drawn a veil over the incident and given no details.  Also, remember that she was sleeping when Alec found her - by the time she woke up, it might have been too late to struggle enough to overcome him.  Considering the way she has always reacted to any physical contact from him up until this point, I would expect that she did indeed struggle.

 

"Neither one of them apparently had any scratches, torn clothing, etc" - where did you read about that?  I do not find any physical description of either of them from after the act, and the team from CSI were not there to examine them.  We do not have the immediate aftermath; the next we see Tess, she is walking home to her family, bundle under her arm.

 

To me, the entire novel does not make sense unless Tess was raped.  If she were merely seduced, then she would not have been a "pure woman", as Hardy styled her.  His point in so doing was to show that she was not guilty, even though society judged her so.  Therefore, she must not have been complicit in what happened to her at Alec's hands.

 

 

Message Edited by dulcinea3 on 02-02-2009 05:28 PM
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Re: TESS: The Masterpiece Classics Film

To me, the entire novel does not make sense unless Tess was raped.  If she were merely seduced, then she would not have been a "pure woman", as Hardy styled her.  His point in so doing was to show that she was not guilty, even though society judged her so.  Therefore, she must not have been complicit in what happened to her at Alec's hands.

 

That's certainly one approach.  But the other is that the novel is too simplistic if it were simply a rape.  In that case, there would have been no fairness of any kind in what happened to her, but just a cruel fate.  I know Hardy was big on fate, but he was also big on complex fate, not simplistic fate.  I think the book has much more power if it is not just rape of a sleeping woman, but if she half-awakes and half-allows herself to be seduced.  She is still a pure woman in that as an innocent country girl she didn't understand, as she plainted to her mother, about men, and allowed this to happen to her through ignorance, not through intent.  

 

I am also affected in my view by Hardy's alternate writing of the seduction scene as a fake marriage, in which case clearly she acquiesced in her loss of virginity.  To go from that to simple rape would, I think, have been a change too major, IMO, for Hardy to have made in his approach to who Tess was. 

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Re: TESS: The Masterpiece Classics Film

[ Edited ]

Dulcinea  -- maybe I have just engaged in this conversation too long to even be rational anymore, but one line of argument I have reached a point to be willing to entertain is that Hardy was even further ahead in his thinking than I had given him credit before these harangues.  (I do not believe we have pursued here the argument that follows before.)

 

Is it possible that Hardy entertained the view that the "natural sexuality" of Tess was "pure"?  That is, in her groggy sleepiness, she indeed was "seduced" as much as she was raped as she woke to Alec's advances?  I will not back away from my view that Tess was ignominiously raped by Alec, but neither can I deny her inherently healthy life forces.   That is why earlier I said "I might pause to consider 'unwilling seductee'." But, because of the passages you cite and because of the general tenor of the novel, I would not accept "consent," whether or not we are told anything about torn clothing or struggles. (Hardy is not an explicit 21st century author.)

 

Such a reading of the "purity" of feminine (female) inherent sensuality and its expression would give Hardy different credit than I have considered for him previously (Rousseau-like purity of the the natural?), but ....  Give me your feedback, I am curious.  Am I now totally off-base? 

 

What would have been most upsetting as a possibility to "gentlemen" like James?  (Does anyone have a link to his critique? I haven't gone looking.)


dulcinea3 wrote:

Peppermill wrote:

Eman  -- I understand the logic you put forth with the quotations you select.  I will only comment that in society that places so much responsibility on the woman to "say no", I do not find Tess's self reprisal at all surprising.  (As you probably well know, even today many battered women blame themselves in situations where a more objective counselor may try to help them understand other possibilities.)  As for being "dazed," that could as easily refer to her risking more trust to Alec by just going with him than she could extend trust for her safety to her other companions that night.  Indeed, her misplaced trust probably contributed to her self loathing and sense of weakness, as self reliant as she tried to be.

 

(As we try to attribute "real" motives to fictional characters!)


Laurel wrote:
I have a feeling that even Hardy does not know exactly what happened.

Everyman wrote:

Eman -- I think we both know that we shall never agree about this characterization of Tess -- you would probably have long ago disqualified me on any jury before which which you might have defended Alec from charges of sexual harrassment.   (I would not, however, use the term "brutal physical rape" and I might pause to consider "unwilling seductee," i.e., if "semi-" were dropped.)

 

I understand that we disagree, but still don't understand what you do with the several passages in which she seems pretty clearly, at least to me, to acknowledge that it was a mistake on her part.  Being totally unwilling does not constitute making a mistake.  

 

Nor do I understand what you do with Tess saying to Alec, as she is returning home,

If I had gone for love o' you, if I had ever
sincerely loved you, if I loved you still, I should not so loathe and
hate myself for my weakness as I do now! ... My eyes were dazed by
you for a little, and that was all."


What weakness?  What dazed?

 

How do you make those words consistent with unwillingness?

 



 


Good Lord, are we back to this again? :smileyindifferent: 

 

I read it the same way as Peppermill (especially the part I have bolded).  Tess was blaming herself for accepting Alec's ride that night as being the catalyst for what happened to her.  Her behavior during that ride certainly does not seem like the behavior of a young woman who is ready and willing to be seduced.  She objects strenuously to his even putting his arm around her waist in order to keep her steady on the horse, and wants him to let her down to walk home.  She also offers to leave her employ.

 


Everyman wrote:

I will only comment that in society that places so much responsibility on the woman to "say no", I do not find Tess's self reprisal at all surprising.

 

That's a fair point.  OTOH, in a society in which virginity was as valued and important as it was then, one would think that she would not have allowed it to be taken without more struggle than we are given any information about.  Neither one of them apparently had any scratches, torn clothing, etc


Now, that made me laugh out loud!!!  How do you know - were you there?  You say we are not told about a struggle; neither are we told about acquiescence.  To be merciful to Tess, Hardy has effectually drawn a veil over the incident and given no details.  Also, remember that she was sleeping when Alec found her - by the time she woke up, it might have been too late to struggle enough to overcome him.  Considering the way she has always reacted to any physical contact from him up until this point, I would expect that she did indeed struggle.

 

"Neither one of them apparently had any scratches, torn clothing, etc" - where did you read about that?  I do not find any physical description of either of them from after the act, and the team from CSI were not there to examine them.  We do not have the immediate aftermath; the next we see Tess, she is walking home to her family, bundle under her arm.

 

To me, the entire novel does not make sense unless Tess was raped.  If she were merely seduced, then she would not have been a "pure woman", as Hardy styled her.  His point in so doing was to show that she was not guilty, even though society judged her so.  Therefore, she must not have been complicit in what happened to her at Alec's hands.

 


Message Edited by Peppermill on 02-02-2009 06:54 PM
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Re: TESS: The Masterpiece Classics Film

I agree with you that Tess was raped, some adapataions portray it as if Tess was all for Alec attacking her! I do not think that this is thecase at all. There was not fairness in any of Tess' life. She was rapped, carried and bore the child of the rape, fell in love and then had Angel taken from her because of her "sin", then she kills Alec believing that this will make life alright for her and Angel but istead she gets arrested for murder and hanged! She has a very tradgic life all through. I admire Tess who even though she had a hard life she still remained pure and herself throughout it. 
 
 

 
 
Everyman wrote:

To me, the entire novel does not make sense unless Tess was raped.  If she were merely seduced, then she would not have been a "pure woman", as Hardy styled her.  His point in so doing was to show that she was not guilty, even though society judged her so.  Therefore, she must not have been complicit in what happened to her at Alec's hands.

 

That's certainly one approach.  But the other is that the novel is too simplistic if it were simply a rape.  In that case, there would have been no fairness of any kind in what happened to her, but just a cruel fate.  I know Hardy was big on fate, but he was also big on complex fate, not simplistic fate.  I think the book has much more power if it is not just rape of a sleeping woman, but if she half-awakes and half-allows herself to be seduced.  She is still a pure woman in that as an innocent country girl she didn't understand, as she plainted to her mother, about men, and allowed this to happen to her through ignorance, not through intent.  

 

I am also affected in my view by Hardy's alternate writing of the seduction scene as a fake marriage, in which case clearly she acquiesced in her loss of virginity.  To go from that to simple rape would, I think, have been a change too major, IMO, for Hardy to have made in his approach to who Tess was. 


 

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Re: TESS: The Masterpiece Classics Film

Eman -- How did this get time stamped before my rant?  I must have been composing at the same time, but I also did not see your post until I saw Viola's comments tonight!

 

 

We are to some extent chasing our tails in these discussions.  Earlier, it was argued, despite Tess's protests to her mother, that her living conditions must certainly have provided her some knowledge of the facts of life.  Now, I can argue both sides of that view myself, but I think we should be aware that we are probing and overlaying a text as we try to bring it to bear on our own comprehensions of the world. 

 

I, for one, would not argue that it is "ignorance" per se that lends Tess her purity, but rather her "truth" to the naturalness of being human -- in the full range of whatever that may mean.  While a rape may not be necesarily physically brutal and violent in life threatening ways, neither can I perceive it as "simply rape" -- it is violation of human relationship at the most fundamental levels.   

 

I do not understand why the novel is "too simplistic" if it were "simply rape." You write "In that case, there would have been no fairness of any kind in what happened to her, just cruel fate."

 

Does that imply that if Tess in any way was seduced at all, i.e., allowed her sexuality to respond to Alec's advances, she "deserved" what happened to her? She "deserved" what happened to her because she killed a man, not because she had had intercourse, forced or otherwise, with him many years ago!  The rest in between was cruelty and Hardy's indictment of society as much as it was "fate."

 

Is Hardy's alternative writing available?  I don't remember what was written about that earlier and haven't gone back to check.  If it is, what are the timing and the circumstances of the "fake marriage"?

 

We need to remember, too, that Hardy was writing in a period when other writers were beginning to question the rights of primogeniture, as the world moved from agrarian to industrial.


Everyman wrote:

To me, the entire novel does not make sense unless Tess was raped.  If she were merely seduced, then she would not have been a "pure woman", as Hardy styled her.  His point in so doing was to show that she was not guilty, even though society judged her so.  Therefore, she must not have been complicit in what happened to her at Alec's hands.

 

That's certainly one approach.  But the other is that the novel is too simplistic if it were simply a rape.  In that case, there would have been no fairness of any kind in what happened to her, but just a cruel fate.  I know Hardy was big on fate, but he was also big on complex fate, not simplistic fate.  I think the book has much more power if it is not just rape of a sleeping woman, but if she half-awakes and half-allows herself to be seduced.  She is still a pure woman in that as an innocent country girl she didn't understand, as she plainted to her mother, about men, and allowed this to happen to her through ignorance, not through intent.  

 

I am also affected in my view by Hardy's alternate writing of the seduction scene as a fake marriage, in which case clearly she acquiesced in her loss of virginity.  To go from that to simple rape would, I think, have been a change too major, IMO, for Hardy to have made in his approach to who Tess was. 


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Re: TESS: The Masterpiece Classics Film

Well, we are chasing our tails a bit, but as anybody who's ever had a kitten or a puppy can attest, chasing your tail can be fun, at least for awhile! 

 

I don't know whether the alternative scenario is available -- I'm sure it is in some book somewhere, but maybe Google hasn't scanned that one yet.   However, looking for info on it, I ran across this quotation from the book, from Chapter 12:

 

 

She had
never wholly cared for him; she did not at all care for him now.  She
had dreaded him, winced before him, succumbed to adroit advantages
he took of her helplessness; then, temporarily blinded by his ardent
manners, had been stirred to confused surrender awhile: had suddenly
despised and disliked him, and had run away.  That was all.  Hate him
she did not quite; but he was dust and ashes to her, and even for her
name's sake she scarcely wished to marry him.

 

Stirred to confused surrender.  Hmmmm?  

 

Anyhow, back to the point, I did find this on Spark Notes, though it's a comment from a post and not part of the Spark Notes, so though it sounds legit, and seems to ring a bell with my memory, I can't vouch for it:

 

Hardy, when he serialized Tess (from July to December of 1891), was asked to take out the Chase scene, which he did. Readers of the serialized version instead had a Tess who is tricked into a fake marriage, and is then deflowered -- though with her full consent. When the novel was subsequently published in volume form, Hardy reinstated the original Chase scene. 

 

If that's right, the original version of Tess, that in serial form, had the fake marriage scene, and the Chase incident was only inserted back in when the full volumes were published. 

 

But by making this change, did Hardy intend to convert the loss of virginity from an unquestioned consentual act to a rape?  Wouldn't he have to consider that this would dramatically change the character of Tess?   

 


Peppermill wrote:

Eman -- How did this get time stamped before my rant?  I must have been composing at the same time, but I also did not see your post until I saw Viola's comments tonight!

 

 

We are to some extent chasing our tails in these discussions.  Earlier, it was argued, despite Tess's protests to her mother, that her living conditions must certainly have provided her some knowledge of the facts of life.  Now, I can argue both sides of that view myself, but I think we should be aware that we are probing and overlaying a text as we try to bring it to bear on our own comprehensions of the world. 

 

I, for one, would not argue that it is "ignorance" per se that lends Tess her purity, but rather her "truth" to the naturalness of being human -- in the full range of whatever that may mean.  While a rape may not be necesarily physically brutal and violent in life threatening ways, neither can I perceive it as "simply rape" -- it is violation of human relationship at the most fundamental levels.   

 

I do not understand why the novel is "too simplistic" if it were "simply rape." You write "In that case, there would have been no fairness of any kind in what happened to her, just cruel fate."

 

Does that imply that if Tess in any way was seduced at all, i.e., allowed her sexuality to respond to Alec's advances, she "deserved" what happened to her? She "deserved" what happened to her because she killed a man, not because she had had intercourse, forced or otherwise, with him many years ago!  The rest in between was cruelty and Hardy's indictment of society as much as it was "fate."

 

Is Hardy's alternative writing available?  I don't remember what was written about that earlier and haven't gone back to check.  If it is, what are the timing and the circumstances of the "fake marriage"?

 

We need to remember, too, that Hardy was writing in a period when other writers were beginning to question the rights of primogeniture, as the world moved from agrarian to industrial.


Everyman wrote:

To me, the entire novel does not make sense unless Tess was raped.  If she were merely seduced, then she would not have been a "pure woman", as Hardy styled her.  His point in so doing was to show that she was not guilty, even though society judged her so.  Therefore, she must not have been complicit in what happened to her at Alec's hands.

 

That's certainly one approach.  But the other is that the novel is too simplistic if it were simply a rape.  In that case, there would have been no fairness of any kind in what happened to her, but just a cruel fate.  I know Hardy was big on fate, but he was also big on complex fate, not simplistic fate.  I think the book has much more power if it is not just rape of a sleeping woman, but if she half-awakes and half-allows herself to be seduced.  She is still a pure woman in that as an innocent country girl she didn't understand, as she plainted to her mother, about men, and allowed this to happen to her through ignorance, not through intent.  

 

I am also affected in my view by Hardy's alternate writing of the seduction scene as a fake marriage, in which case clearly she acquiesced in her loss of virginity.  To go from that to simple rape would, I think, have been a change too major, IMO, for Hardy to have made in his approach to who Tess was. 



 

 

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I think, therefore I drive people nuts.
Distinguished Bibliophile
Peppermill
Posts: 6,768
Registered: ‎04-04-2007
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Re: TESS: The Masterpiece Classics Film

Now, Tanner had it right.  Then, we had those bloody Reagan years!

 

 

I'll be back.  This puppy is still willing to chase her tail awhile longer, but it is time to quit for the night.  :smileyvery-happy:

"Seize the moments of happiness, love and be loved! That is the only reality in the world, all else is folly. It is the one thing we are interested in here." -- Leo Tolstoy
Distinguished Bibliophile
Peppermill
Posts: 6,768
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Re: TESS: The Masterpiece Classics Film

I laughed last night to find the extent to which commentary as well as our own readings of the text has crept into our discussions here. Ironically, as much as I appreciate commentary, Tess is a book for which I have done little background reading.

 

Mainly because I am now very curious about certain veins of criticism about this text, I began to do a little exploring.  My attempts are very preliminary and I probably shan't have time for a few days to do much more.  But, I did run across this interesting piece from a site of the City University of New York at Brooklyn.  

 

I haven't read all of it myself yet, nor do I necessarily agree with the opening paragraph, nor do I know if the author fully addresses it in the scope of the articles.  But, I have skimmed the text enough to consider the articles themselves worth calling to the attention of us who are still fiddle-fuddling around with this particular masterpiece of Hardy. 

"Seize the moments of happiness, love and be loved! That is the only reality in the world, all else is folly. It is the one thing we are interested in here." -- Leo Tolstoy
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dulcinea3
Posts: 4,372
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: TESS: The Masterpiece Classics Film

I will be back to this discussion, but at the moment my time is too much taken up by work (what's that?!), S&S, and Silas Marner.  This discussion requires a lot of thought and composition in order to express myself clearly and not appear to contradict myself.

 

If I had lots of time (!), I do have a lot of criticism at my disposal (at least several hundred pages, I think), in my Norton Critical Edition of Tess, but unfortunately I don't, and I have lots of fiction to read, which is more fun, anyway!

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