The Mayor of Casterbridge (English Library)

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9780140431254: The Mayor of Casterbridge (English Library)

One of the Wessex tales, this tells the story of the brooding, and sometimes brutal Michael Henchard and the women with whom he searches for happiness in the harsh world of 19th-century rural England.

"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.

Review:

"Hardy requires annotation and careful contextual placing...noted Victorian scholar Norman Page supplies this admirably." -- John Sutherland, University of London

From the Back Cover:

Under the powerful influence of the rum furmity, Michael Henchard, a hay-trusser by trade, sells his wife susan and their child Elizabeth-Jane to Newson, a sailor, for five guineaus.

Years later, Susan, now a widow, arrives in Casterbridge to seek her legal husband. To their surprise, Henchard is now the Mayor of Casterbridge and following the sale of his wife, took a twenty-one-year vow not to drink, out of shame. Henchard remarries Susan and as Elizabeth-Jane believes herself to be Newson's daughter, he adopts her as his own. But he cannot evade his destiny by such measures, for his past refuses to be buried. Fate contrives for him to be punished for the recklessness of his younger days.

In this powerful depiction of a man who overreaches himself, Hardy once again show his acute psycological grasp and his deep-seated knowledge of mid-nineteenth century Dorset.

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Hardy, Thomas
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