• Jude l'obscur

    Thomas Hardy

    Jude l'Obscur est le dernier et le plus audacieux des romans de Thomas Hardy. L'auteur de Tess d'Urberville y songe dès 1888, comme en atteste une note de ses carnets : " Une nouvelle sur un jeune homme qui n'a pu aller à Oxford. Ses efforts, son échec. " Hardy estime que " le monde doit savoir " quelles difficultés rencontrent les non-privilégiés pour s'instruire - l'ultime ambition de Jude. Mais, bientôt, le roman en cours suit une autre voie : Hardy entend contester les lois sur le mariage, qui " constituent la machinerie tragique de l'histoire ".Condamné par son origine, Jude l'est encore par les liens d'un mariage forcé, puis par l'interdit pesant sur un amour illicite, sa compagne étant sa propre cousine. Hardy veut enfin décrire " la guerre terrible qui se livre entre la chair et l'esprit ", et qui retarde l'accomplissement du destin de Jude.Paru d'abord sous forme de feuilleton en 1895, Jude l'Obscur fit scandale par sa façon ouverte de traiter des moeurs dans la campagne anglaise de la fin du siècle - ce Wessex magnifié dans toute l'oeuvre de Thomas Hardy.

  • Gabriel Oak, jeune paysan du Wessex, est devenu propriétaire d'une bergerie. Il s'éprend de Barbara Everdene, venue s'installer au pays avec sa tante. Mais la belle repousse ses avances avec hauteur. Ayant perdu toutes ses bêtes par la faute d'un chien mal dressé, Gabriel, ruiné, est réduit à trouver du travail dans une ferme qu'il vient de sauver d'un incendie et dont la propriétaire n'est autre que... Barbara, qu'un héritage a rendue riche.Entretemps, la jeune femme subit les assauts d'un prospère exploitant, William Boldwood, mais aussi de son rival, le fringant sergent Francis Troy, qu'elle finit par épouser, sans savoir qu'une domestique, Fanny, est enceinte de ses oeuvres... Gabriel ne parvient pas à lui cacher la mort en couches de la mère et de l'enfant, tandis que Troy, repentant, tente de se noyer. Alors que chacun le croit mort, il resurgit à la veille de Noël et est abattu par Boldwood, qui retourne l'arme contre lui. Lorsque enfin Barbara comprend qu'elle n'a jamais eu qu'un ami, Gabriel lui annonce qu'il quitte l'Angleterre pour la Californie...Le quatrième roman de Thomas Hardy (1874) fut son premier grand succès public et critique.

  • Dans le sud-ouest de l'Angleterre , au début du XIXe siècle, quatre destins de femmes meurtries par l'amour : amour impossible pour un soldat étranger, amour ensorcelé pour un violoniste de village, amour refusé par un fils trop rigide, amour rêvé pour un homme jamais rencontré... Comme dans Tess d'Urberville et Jude l'obscur, Thomas Hardy conte à merveille dans ces courts textes les tourments de l'âme féminine et la brutalité d'une société où le sentiment n'a pas sa place.

  • Un jeune fermier et un vicaire se disputent le coeur de Fancy Day, institutrice dans un village du Wessex. Indisponible en poche, l'un des premiers romans de l'auteur de Tess d'Urberville.
    Dans le paisible village de Mellstock, à la veille de Noël, l'arrivée d'une nouvelle institutrice est au coeur de toutes les conversations. Sans que nul l'ait encore vue, Fancy Day, une enfant du pays, fait déjà tourner les têtes des célibataires du comté.Dick Dewey, un jeune fermier, est le premier à lui faire des avances. Tombé fou amoureux au premier regard, il finit par la demander en mariage dans le plus grand secret. Mais un autre homme n'est pas indifférent aux charmes de la jeune femme : Mr Maybold, le vicaire, qui l'invite à se joindre à la chorale de la paroisse comme organiste. À son tour, il s'offre à l'épouser. Or Fancy, frivole et capricieuse, fait languir ses prétendants, bien consciente qu'il lui faudra renoncer à son indépendance lorsqu'elle sera mariée.Dans un labyrinthe de passions, Sous la verte feuillée, paru anonymement en 1872, dresse une fresque pleine d'ironie et de mélancolie du monde rural cher à Thomas Hardy. De cette histoire tissée de savoureux malentendus, où s'affrontent pour une femme une âme candide et un notable respecté, ne subsistera qu'un secret bien gardé par la fantasque Fancy...

  • Michael Henchard est un jeune saisonnier qui vit avec sa femme, Susan, et sa fille, Elizabeth-Jane, dans un village du Wessex.Un jour, sous l'empire de l'alcool, après une violente dispute avec sa femme, il décide de la vendre avec sa fille à un marin de passage, M. Wenson. Dégrisé, il mesure l'étendue du désastre et, plus seul que jamais, se promet de ne plus jamais s'approcher d'un goulot...Dix-huit années après, devenu un marchand prospère, Michael est élu maire de la ville de Casterbridge. Tous le croient veuf. Mais le hasard place sur sa route une certaine Lucette Le Sueur, avec qui il noue une relation...Or la jeune femme, déshonorée, se voit contrainte d'épouser Michael pour retrouver sa dignité. Pas si simple, puisque le maire de Casterbridge, devant la loi, reste un homme marié... C'est le moment que choisissent, pour surgir du passé, Susan et sa fille Elisabeth-Jane...

  • Thomasine est sur le point de se marier avec Damon Wildeve, jeune homme charmant mais trop peu sérieux. Courtisé par la frondeuse Eustacia Vye, au tempérament fougueux et aventurier, il répond à ses charmes et hésite à épouser celle qui lui était destinée.Eustacia, avec ses velléités de liberté, est prête à tout pour quitter cette lande déserte et trop tranquille. Alors, quand le beau et brillant Clym Yeobright revient de Paris où il est diamantaire, Eustacia y voit la possibilité de s'évader enfin. D'autant que Clym répond favorablement à ses avances. Mais Clym a d'autres projets. Et celui de quitter son pays natal n'en fait pas vraiment partie...Ce classique de la littérature anglo-saxonne, paru en 1878 et révisé en 1912, combine tous les éléments de la tragédie : repliés sur eux-mêmes, les personnages de ce Retour au pays natal contemplent en vain l'horizon d'une lande jalouse, dont ils semblent les prisonniers.

  • Tout rapproche Lady Viviette, dont le mari a disparu en Afrique depuis des années, et le tout jeune Swithin, promis à une belle carrière d'astronome. Mais s'il y a des unions écrites dans les étoiles, celle-ci est contrecarrée par les déterminismes humains dont l'écrivain anglais Thomas Hardy s'est toujours fait le peintre sarcastique. Leur condition sociale, leur âge et l'« ironie de la vie » - ici incarnée par un vieil oncle misogyne qui fait de sa fortune un objet de chantage pour empêcher l'union - rendront la séparation inéluctable...C'est pour oublier combien la passion ne dure qu'un temps que Thomas Hardy a choisi comme décor de cette histoire tragique la pérennité des espaces célestes. Dans À la lumière des étoiles (1882), l'illusion de l'amour, frappée en plein coeur, reste totale.

  • Upon its first appearance in 1895, Thomas Hardy's Jude the Obscure shocked Victorian critics and readers with a frank depiction of sexuality and an unbridled indictment of the institutions of marriage, education, and religion, reportedly causing one Angli-can bishop to order the book publicly burned. The experience so exhausted Hardy that he never wrote a work of fiction again.
    Rich in symbolism, Jude the Obscure is the story of Jude Fawley and his struggle to rise from his station as a poor Wessex stonemason to that of a scholar at Christminster. It is also the story of Jude's ill-fated relationship with his cousin Sue Bridehead, and the ultimate tragedy that causes Jude's undoing and Sue's transformation. Jude the Obscure explores man's essential loneliness and remains one of Hardy's most widely read novels.

  • Jude Fawley is a young man who longs to better himself and go to Christminster University. However, poverty forces him into a job as a stonemason and an unhappy marriage. When his wife leaves him Jude moves to Christminster determined to follow his dream. There he meets and falls for his free-spirited cousin, Sue Bridehead. The couple refuses to marry much to the disapproval of the society around them. In this heartbreaking story Hardy shows the devastating effects of social prejudice and oppression.The novel caused outrage when it was published in 1895 and, as a result, was the last novel Hardy ever wrote.


  • HarperCollins is proud to present its new range of best-loved, essential classics. Here is one of Thomas Hardy's most popular novels, soon to be released as a major motion picture in May 2015.
    'I shall do one thing in this life - one thing certain - that is, love you, and long for you, and keep wanting you till I die'
    Independent and spirited, Bathsheba Everdene owns the hearts of three men. Striving to win her love in different ways, their relationships with Bathsheba complicate her life in bucolic Wessex - and cast shadows over their own. With the morals and expectations of rural society weighing heavily upon her, Bathsheba experiences the torture of unrequited love and betrayal, and discovers how random acts of chance and tragedy can dramatically alter life's course.
    The first of Hardy's novels to become a major literary success, Far from the Madding Crowd explores what it means to live and to love.

  • As Baptista travels home to marry her parents' old neighbour, she encounters her lost lover. They elope together, but tragedy strikes unexpectedly on their wedding day and she returns to her parents to do her duty. Will her other, brief love remain a secret? United by the theme of love, the writings in the Great Loves series span over two thousand years and vastly different worlds. Readers will be introduced to love's endlessly fascinating possibilities and extremities: romantic love, platonic love, erotic love, gay love, virginal love, adulterous love, parental love, filial love, nostalgic love, unrequited love, illicit love, not to mention lost love, twisted and obsessional love....

  • Etched against the background of a dying rural society, Tess of the d'Urbervilles was Thomas Hardy's 'bestseller,' and Tess Durbeyfield remains his most striking and tragic heroine. Of all the characters he created, she meant the most to him. Hopelessly torn between two men--Alec d'Urberville, a wealthy, dissolute young man who seduces her in a lonely wood, and Angel Clare, her provincial, moralistic, and unforgiving husband--Tess escapes from her vise of passion through a horrible, desperate act.
    'Like the greatest characters in literature, Tess lives beyond the final pages of the book as a permanent citizen of the imagination,' said Irving Howe. 'In Tess he stakes everything on his sensuous apprehension of a young woman's life, a girl who is at once a simple milkmaid and an archetype of feminine strength. . . . Tess is that rare creature in literature: goodness made interesting.'
    Now Tess of the d'Urbervilles has been brought to television in a magnificent new co-production from A&E Network and London Weekend Television. Justine Waddell (Anna Karenina) stars as the tragic heroine, Tess; Oliver Milburn (Chandler & Co.) is Angel Clare; and Jason Flemyng is Alec d'Urberville. The cast also includes John McEnery (Black Beauty) as Jack Durbeyfield and Lesley Dunlop (The Elephant Man) as Joan Durbeyfield. Tess of the d'Urbervilles is directed by Ian Sharp and produced by Sarah Wilson, with a screenplay by Ted Whitehead; it was filmed in Hardy country, the beautiful English countryside in Dorset where Thomas Hardy set his novels.


  • Etched against the background of a dying rural society, Tess of the d'Urbervilles was Thomas Hardy's "bestseller," and Tess Durbeyfield remains his most striking and tragic heroine. Of all the characters he created, she meant the most to him. Hopelessly torn between two men--Alec d'Urberville, a wealthy, dissolute young man who seduces her in a lonely wood, and Angel Clare, her provincial, moralistic, and unforgiving husband--Tess escapes from her vise of passion through a horrible, desperate act.
    ----"Like the greatest characters in literature, Tess lives beyond the final pages of the book as a permanent citizen of the imagination," said Irving Howe. "In Tess he stakes everything on his sensuous apprehension of a young woman's life, a girl who is at once a simple milkmaid and an archetype of feminine strength. . . . Tess is that rare creature in literature: goodness made interesting."
    ----Now Tess of the d'Urbervilles has been brought to television in a magnificent new co-production from A&E Network and London Weekend Television. Justine Waddell (Anna Karenina) stars as the tragic heroine, Tess; Oliver Milburn (Chandler & Co.) is Angel Clare; and Jason Flemyng is Alec d'Urberville. The cast also includes John McEnery (Black Beauty) as Jack Durbeyfield and Lesley Dunlop (The Elephant Man) as Joan Durbeyfield. Tess of the d'Urbervilles is directed by Ian Sharp and produced by Sarah Wilson, with a screenplay by Ted Whitehead; it was filmed in Hardy country, the beautiful English countryside in Dorset where Thomas Hardy set his novels.
    The Modern Library has played a significant role in American cultural life for the better part of a century. The series was founded in 1917 by the publishers Boni and Liveright and eight years later acquired by Bennett Cerf and Donald Klopfer. It provided the foun-
    dation for their next publishing venture, Random House. The Modern Library has been a staple of the American book trade, providing readers with affordable hardbound editions of important works of literature and thought. For the Modern Library's seventy-fifth anniversary, Random House redesigned the series, restoring as its emblem the running torchbearer created by Lucian Bernhard in 1925 and refurbishing jackets, bindings, and type, as well as inaugurating a new program of selecting titles. The Modern Library continues to provide the world's best books, at the best prices.


  • HarperCollins is proud to present its incredible range of best-love, essential classics.
    'Under the Greenwood Tree' is a tale of love, tragedy and the changing charm of traditional village life when it is met with the cold reality of modernity.
    Centring on the quaint rural village of Mellstock, set deep within Hardy's imagined and picturesque county of Wessex, the novel revolves around a double plot of the hopeful love story of Dick Dewey and Fancy Day and the tragic demise of the Mellstock Choir, and what the crumbling of long-held traditions means to the local community. The arrival of Mr Maybold, a new vicar with newfangled ideas, unsettles the local community with ideas of revolutionary change, in which the church and its generations-old choir are an anchor.
    Considered one of Hardy's most upbeat and optimistic novels, 'Under the Greenwood Tree' explores issues of past and future, hope and love, and is a delightful addition to the Collins' canon of Thomas Hardy's classic novels.

  • Bathsheba Everdene arrives in the small village of Weatherbury and captures the heart of three very different men; Gabriel Oak, a quiet shepherd, the proud, obdurate Farmer Boldwood and dashing, unscrupulous Sergeant Troy. The battle for her affections will have dramatic, tragic and surprising consequences in this classic tale of love and misunderstanding.

  • This fine novel sets in opposition two of Thomas Hardy's most unforgettable creations: his heroine, the sensuous, free-spirited Eustacia Vye, and the solemn, majestic stretch of upland in Dorsetshire he called Egdon Heath. The famous opening reveals the haunting power of that dark, forbidding moor where proud Eustacia fervently awaits a clandestine meeting with her lover, Damon Wildeve. But Eustacia's dreams of escape are not to be realized--neither Wildeve nor the returning native Clym Yeobright can bring her salvation.
    Injured by forces beyond their control, Hardy's characters struggle vainly in the net of destiny. In the end, only the face of the lonely heath remains untouched by fate in this masterpiece of tragic passion, a tale that perfectly epitomizes the author's own unique and melancholy genius.
    From the Paperback edition.

  • One of Hardy's most powerful novels, The Mayor of Casterbridge opens with a shocking and haunting scene: In a drunken rage, Michael Henchard sells his wife and daughter to a visiting sailor at a local fair. When they return to Casterbridge some nineteen years later, Henchard--having gained power and success as the mayor--finds he cannot erase the past or the guilt that consumes him. The Mayor of Casterbridge is a rich, psychological novel about a man whose own flaws combine with fate to cause his ruin.
    This Modern Library Paperback Classic reprints the authoritative 1912 Wessex edition, as well as Hardy's map of Wessex.


  • HarperCollins is pround to present a range of best-loved, essential classics.
    'My life looks as if it had been wasted for want of chances! When I see what you know, what you have read, and seen, and thought, I feel what a nothing I am!'
    Challenging the hypocrisy and social conventions of the rural Victorian world, Tess of the D'Urbervilles follows the story of Tess Durbeyfield as she attempts to escape the poverty of her background, seeking wealth by claiming connection with the aristocratic D'Urberville family. It is through Tess's relationships with two very different men that Hardy tells the story of his tragic heroine, and exposes the double standards of the world that she inhabits with searing pathos and heart-rending sentiment.

  • THIS ORANGE INHERITANCE EDITION OF Tess of the D'Urbervilles IS PUBLISHED IN ASSOCIATION WITH THE ORANGE PRIZE FOR FICTIONBooks shape our lives and transform the way we see ourselves and each other. The best books are timeless and continue to be relevant generation after generation. Vintage Classics asked the winners of The Orange Prize for Fiction which books they would pass onto the next generation and why. Anne Michaels chose Tess of the D'Urbervilles.Tess is an innocent young girl until the day she goes to visit her rich 'relatives', the D'Urbervilles. Her encounter with her manipulative cousin, Alec, leads her onto a path that is beset with suffering and betrayal. When she falls in love with another man, Angel Clare, Tess sees a potential escape from her past, but only if she can tell him her shameful secret...'Gloriously physical, full of passion and irony, humour and tenderness' Anne Michaels

  • Proud, passionate Eustacia Vye marries Clym Yeobright in the hope that he will help her escape her cramped rural existence. But when their relationship falters Eustacia turns to her old lover Damon Wildeve, leading to a disastrous climax on the brooding wilds of Egdon Heath.

  • WITH AN INTRODUCTION BY LUCY HUGHES-HALLETTThe Mayor of Casterbridge is a man haunted by his past. In his youth he betrayed his wife and baby daughter in a shocking incident that led him to swear never to touch alcohol again for twenty-one years. He has since risen from his humble origins to become a respected pillar of the community in Casterbridge, but his secrets cannot stay hidden forever and he has many hard lessons left to learn.

  • Far from the Madding Crowd, Hardy's passionate tale of the beautiful, headstrong farmer Bathsheba Everdene and her three suitors, firmly established the thirty-four-year-old writer as a popular novelist. According to Virginia Woolf, "The subject was right; the method was right; the poet and the countryman, the sensual man, the sombre reflective man, the man of learning, all enlisted to produce a book which . . . must hold its place among the great English novels." Introducing the fictional name of "Wessex" to describe Hardy's legendary countryside, this early masterpiece draws a vivid picture of rural life in southwest England.
    This Modern Library Paperback Classic is set from the 1912 Wessex edition and features Hardy's map of Wessex.

  • From the master of Victorian tragedy, the surprisingly comic adventures of a man caught between romance and religion.
    When young Mr. Stockdale arrives in a small village to fill in for the Methodist minister, he finds himself pining for his comely new landlady. But she leads a mysterious life, keeping odd hours and speaking in hushed tones. As his love for her grows, he’s soon at the center of a hilarious high-stakes adventure, complete with slapstick, hijinks, and a marauding band of cross-dressers. And he’s forced to choose: follow his heart or his higher purpose?
    ***
    This is a Hybrid Book.
    Melville House HybridBooks combine print and digital media into an enhanced reading experience by including with each title additional curated material called Illuminations -- maps, photographs, illustrations, and further writing about the author and the book.
    The Melville House Illuminations are free with the purchase of any title in the HybridBook series, no matter the format.
    Purchasers of the print version can obtain the Illuminations for a given title simply by scanning the QR code found in the back of each book, or by following the url also given in the back of the print book, then downloading the Illumination in whatever format works best for you.
    Purchasers of the digital version receive the appropriate Illuminations automatically as part of the ebook edition.
    From the Trade Paperback edition.

  • With an essay by Rosemary Sumner.'Then they proceeded to scan the sky, roving from planet to star, from single stars to double stars, from double to coloured stars...'Hardy's atmospheric, moving story of star-crossed lovers shows human beings at the mercy of forces far beyond their control, setting a tragic drama of human passion and conflict against a background of vast stellar space and scientific discovery. Two on a Tower tells the story of Lady Constantine, who breaks all the rules of decorum when she falls in love with the beautiful youth Swithin St Cleeve, her social inferior and ten years her junior. Together, in an ancient monument converted into an astronomical observation tower, they create their own private universe - until the pressures of the outside world threaten to destroy it.The Penguin English Library - 100 editions of the best fiction in English, from the eighteenth century and the very first novels to the beginning of the First World War.

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