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An analysis of the significance of chapter 37, to the novel as a whole;

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Introduction

English Coursework Tess of the D'Urbervilles By Thomas Hardy An analysis of the significance of chapter 37, to the novel as a whole; The setting of this chapter is within the D'Urberville mansion in the Froom Valley. Hardy uses the previous chapters to introduce the atmosphere within the mansion, making it apparent that there is an ancestral past for Tess, which makes her increasingly uncomfortable and it doesn't help that Angel keeps referring to Tess as a D'Urberville; 'The long pointed features, narrow eye, and smirk of the one, so suggestive of merciless treachery; the bill-hook nose, large teeth, and bold eye of the other suggesting arrogance to the point of ferocity, haunt the beholder afterwards in his dreams; The image of the women is not one of beauty and it is surprising to the reader that Angel should pick up on them as having similar features to those of Tess. This hints that their honeymoon may turn sour, as previously in the novel, Angel has always commented on Tess's beauty. Inevitably, Tess decides to tell Angel of her sin, which he cannot accept; hence bringing the sourness hinted in an earlier chapter, (chapter 10). Love survives on mutual trust, and since Tess has broken that trust, Angel has difficulty dealing with her. Within chapter 33, pg264, we discover Angels' sleep-walking habits. A fight occurred with Angel and a passing man, who was sexually attracted towards Tess. Angel overheard words of the man and his colleague and struck the man on the chin with the full force of his fist. ...read more.

Middle

Angel starts to walk across a plank which was once a bridge, but with the autumn flood, the handrails had been washed away. The description of the river underneath them, symbolises Angel's life; 'The swift stream raced and gyrated under them, tossing, distorting, and splitting the moon's reflected surface'. From this the reader has a representation of the symbolism connected with Angel's feelings. The torrent of the river symbolises Angels' life and mind at this exact point in his life. This suggests that Angel still loves Tess, yet with the new found information of Tess's sin, he cannot except that Tess has slept with another man, therefore he feels that their relationship is dead. Yet the question the reader asks is; Angel didn't follow what his father wished (becoming a priest) because he didn't believe in God, therefore why can't he forget the restrictions of society and continue loving Tess? As they are crossing the perilous bridge, Hardy brings the reader into Tess' thoughts again. With the renewed danger, Tess thinks that if Angel were to fall now with the both of them, she would not care, as 'his last half-hour with her would have been a loving one, while if they lived till he awoke his daytime aversion would return.' From this we know just how much Tess loves Angel. She loves him to the point where she can no longer bear to live, knowing that he doesn't love her. Therefore if she were to die now, at least she would have her husband by her side, treating her lovingly, rather than having the constant tension between them, which tortures her throughout the day, and from the symbolism constantly referring to descriptions in the novel, we know that Angel feels the same, even though Tess doesn't realise it. ...read more.

Conclusion

Tess therefore makes manifest her promise to Angel in previous chapters by leaving her life in his hands. The final separation of Tess and Angel that ends this chapter leaves some degree of room for consideration. Angel remains calm, as always, yet realizes that it is he who must change before he can accept Tess again. He therefore places the burden of acceptance on himself rather than on Tess, while still allowing for her sustenance. Angel takes grudging steps toward admitting his own fallibility; his struggle to sacrifice his principles for greater ones and Tess's reaction to her new fate will provide a great deal of the narrative drive of the rest of the novel. A lot of adjectives are used within this chapter, convincingly describing the setting, but Hardy does not use very much alliteration. I have found only one occasion where Hardy uses alliteration, which I have noted about earlier on. The use of metaphors and similes are very rare within this chapter, but from reading the rest of the novel, I know that Hardy does occasionally use these forms of description. The symbolism is very melancholic and gruesome in this chapter, connecting to Angels mind and the torment he is in, due to the revelation of Tess's past. Although the symbolism in this chapter refers to Angel's emotions, this symbolism leads to Tess' emotions as well, as Hardy cleverly links the two and gives the reader an insight to what the character, Tess is thinking, at moments of multifaceted symbolism, which then refers to the emptiness she has inside of her with the knowledge of Angel's abhorrence towards her. ?? ?? ?? ?? Nadine Rowe 10e ...read more.

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