A Preface to Hardy remains the best introduction to one of the most important and popular writers in English literature. The first section concentrates on Hardy the man and outlines the intellectual and cultural context in which he lived. The author then moves on to examine a wide range of Hardy's work, with particular reference to The Mayor of Casterbridge. There is new material on Hardy's short stories and their relation to the major novels, and on The Dynasts, which accompanies a study of a range of Hardy's other poetry.

part part1|84 pages

The Writer and his Setting

chapter |4 pages

Chronological table

chapter 1|34 pages

Hardy's life

chapter 2|14 pages

Hardy the countryman

chapter 3|31 pages

Hardy the Victorian

part part2|87 pages

Critical Survey

chapter 4|14 pages

The Hardy hero and his predicament

chapter 5|15 pages

The Mayor of Casterbridge

chapter 6|16 pages

The short stories and The Dynasts

chapter 7|40 pages

Selected poems

part part3|3 pages

Reference Section