chapter  4
73 Pages

Hardy's Women

Thisisnottopretendthatnoothercritichashadanything worthwhiletosayaboutTessorSueorGraceMelbury,for example.Ontheotherhand,Idothinkthatonecanseewhat Hardyisuptoifonefocusesontheseandotherofhiswomenin awaythathasn'tsofarbeendone.Andthismeansthatamong otherthingsoneshouldtrytoseethelaterheroinesinthe contextofHardy'sdevelopmentasanovelist(Itakeitfor grantedthathediddevelop),andthatitisworthwhiletotry toexaminethecomplexityoftheirrelationshipswiththe novel'smen,ratherthantreatingthemasamatteroflove,pure andsimple.