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Thomas Hardy: Analysis on Tony Kytes: Arch Deciever

Uploaded by Erhan on Nov 06, 2002

Thomas Hardy concentrated on human relationships in his short stories, as this was his main area of interest. Hardy also had a keen interest on the supernatural such as aliens. In 1874, Thomas Hardy got married to the love of his life, Emma Gifford, but after 38 years of marriage in 1912, Emma passed away sending Hardy into deep depression. This is when Hardy’s short stories hit its prime. He went on a pilgrimage in 1914 to find out about life after Emma. Although, in the same year, he re-married to Florence Dugdale at the age of 74 and in 1928, he passed away. All his poems are firmly grounded in Dorset life and folklore, particularly the short stories The Withered Arm and Tony Kytes: Arch

The first relationship that we find out about in the Withered Arm is Getrude and Farmer Lodge, we find out that they are married:

“Her face too was fresh in colour, but it was of a totally different quality- soft and evanescent, like the light under a heap of rose petals.”

This is the comparison between Gertrude and Farmer Lodge. Hardy describes Gertrude as “the light under a heap of rose petals” suggesting she is way beyond beauty. The simile is effective, as this sets a picture in your head of what she would look like.

This may also suggest that the marriage is purely superficial and Lodge has only married Gertrude purely as she is pretty:

“The well-to-do Farmer Lodge came nearly last; and his young wife, who accompanied him, walked up the aisle…appeared thus for the first time.”

This says that Lodge his parading his new “possession” to the public, and doesn’t care about Gertrude’s feelings, just the fact that he is with a beautiful woman.

Later in the story, Lodge rejects Gertrude because of her disfigurement. This shows that Lodge is a very shallow individual and is defying the laws of marriage, for example “in sickness and health”.

Other people interpretations of Gertrude would be very positive as all eyes are upon her when she is paraded at church, but Rhoda, one of the milkmaids and Lodge’s ex-girlfriend isn’t best pleased about Lodge’s new wife and how she looks:

“I wouldn’t look up at her if she were to pass my window this instant.”

This shows a very bad approach towards Gertrude and she feels threatened by her at the same time.

Later in the story, Rhoda has a dream and her...

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Uploaded by:   Erhan

Date:   11/06/2002

Category:   Literature

Length:   4 pages (985 words)

Views:   3180

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