Introduction to Literature -

Introduction to Literature -

Introduction to Literature Lesson fourteen: Hardy and frost Life Choices Margarette Connor

Contents: Thomas Hardys life Serialization Bowdlerization The Ruined Maid discussion Robert Frosts life The Road Not Taken discussion Introduction Today were starting another

theme, life decisions, and in the works well be reading in the next few lessons, well be looking at how different authors write about how we make the decisions we do in life, and how the decisions we make impact on our life. Thomas Hardy Foot in both camps

Victorian writer and a Modernist writer. Full career as a novelist followed by a full career as a poet. Hardy and his topics He is associated with the English county of Dorset, which he fictionalized into "Wessex.

His view of fate and his criticism of society, especially in its treatment of women, always drew criticism Many Honors: Awarded the Order of Merit, having previously refused a knighthood, 1910. Receives the Freedom of the Borough of Dorchester, 1910 Gold Medal of the Royal Society of

Literature, 1912 Numerous honorary degrees. Parents Born June 2, 1840, in a cottage in Higher Bockhampton, Dorset, near the regional market town of Dorchester. Eldest of four children of Thomas Hardy and Jemima Hand

Hardys parents Schooling 1848 Begins lower school in Stinsford. 1850-1856 Continues schooling in Dorchester. Apprenticeship

A young Hardy Through 1856-1860 he was apprenticed to Dorchester architect John Hicks. Hardy later becomes his assistant. During this period, he begins friendship with Horace Moule, who becomes his intellectual mentor, and encourages

his study of Latin and Greek. Move to London Moves to London in 1862 to work for architect Arthur Blomfield. This is the beginning of a lot of back and forth between Dorchester and London for Hardy. They arent too far apart in terms of distance, but they are a world apart in

terms of lifestyle. First publication "How I Built Myself a House", appears in Chambers's Journal, 1865. Begins to write poetry though none is published A young, if fuzzy, Hardy.

Finally a successful novel Far from the Madding Crowd serialized in Cornhill Magazine and published in two volumes by Smith, Elder, 1874. It is Hardy's first substantial literary success and his fourth novel. After this he begins to have more and more success as a writer, and he is eventually able to give up architecture and

become a full-time writer. Serialization Very common for authors to publish their novels a section at a time in magazines. Serial novels very popular with readers, hence very popular with publishers--they helped sales. If a novel popular, often published as one volume after the magazine. Often author would revise between the time it

was written for the magazine, often under extreme time constraints, and the time it came out as one volume. Marriage In 1874, Hardy marries Emma Gifford whom hed met in 1870. The two rent a house in London Emma and Hardy

around the time of their marriage. 1878, a busy year The Return of the Native, previously serialized in Belgravia Magazine, published in three volumes by Smith, Elder.

The Hardy's move to Tooting, London. An Indiscretion in the Life of an Heiress (a version of part of The Poor Man and the Lady) serialized in New Quarterly Magazine and Harper's Weekly, New York. Tess 1891. Tess of the d'Urbervilles, previously serialized (in bowdlerized form) in The Graphic,

published in three volumes by Osgood, McIlvaine. Bowdlerized form When Dr. Thomas Bowdler edited The Family Shakespeare in 1818, he cut out all the sexy bits, or as he put it whatever is unfit to be read by a gentleman in the presence of ladies. So nowadays, we used this form of his

name to mean a prudish cutting of a literary work in the name of decency. Jude the Obscure Previously serialized in Harper's New Monthly Magazine, Jude is published in one volume by Osgood, McIlvaine in 1895. The novel was both praised and violently attacked, the extremity of negative response contributing to Hardy's decision to abandon

novel writing. One of the other reasons was his own continuing anxieties about the literary value of the novel form, Turns to poetry Wessex Poems and Other Verses, Hardy's first collection of poetry, published by Harper and Brothers, 1898.

Second marriage 1914 Hardy marries Florence Dugdale, who has been his secretary since 1905. World War I Outbreak of First World War and its brutality "destroyed all Hardy's belief

in the gradual ennoblement of man" and "gave the coup de grce to any conception he may have nourished of a fundamental ultimate Wisdom at the back of things. From Young Hardy. Preparing for the end In 1917 Hardy begins sorting his

papers, destroying many of them, in preparation for his posthumously published "autobiography." Birthday honors On his 80th birthday in 1920, Hardy receives messages of congratulations from King George V and the Prime Minister

He is visited at Max Gate by a deputation from the Incorporated Society of Authors. Death January 11, 1928 Thomas Hardy dies. His heart is removed and buried in Emma Hardy's grave in Stinsford Churchyard. His body is cremated and the ashes buried in Poet's Corner, Westminster

Abbey. Winter Words, his last volume of poetry, published posthumously. The Ruined Maid Originally published in Poems of the Past and the Present in 1902 though it was written 1866.

This is interesting for while the poem seems quite modern on the one hand, it is firmly set in Victorian values. A look at the poem Look at Hardys use of irony. Being ruined was the saving of

Amelia. What does this say about womens choices? Look at Hardys use of ordinary, country language. The use of language in the poem When it comes to the country girls lines,

the meter is very forced and false. What is Hardy doing with this? We dont hear from Amelia much. Shes become a fine lady and probably doesnt like the reminder of her past. She calls her former friend a raw country girl. Robert Frost (18741963)

One of Americas favorite poets. Regional in voice yet national in scope. Frost on poetry Poetry provides the one permissible way of saying one thing and meaning another. People say, Why dont you

say what you mean? We never do that, do we, being all of us too much poets. We like to talk in parables and in hinds and in indirections--whether from diffidence or some other instinct. Many honors First person to inlude: win four Pulitzer Prizes, National Institute of Arts and Letters member,

American Academy of Arts and Letters member, Gold Medal from the National Institute of Arts and Letters, Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress. 1958 Emerson-Thoreau Medal of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Bollingen Prize for Poetry.

University teacher After his career as a poet took off, he taught poetry at a number of schools including Amherst College, the University of Michigan, Harvard, Dartmouth, and Middlebury College

Parents Born on March 26, 1874 in San Francisco, first child of Isabelle Moodie and William Prescott Frost Jr. Both his parents were old New Englanders, but his father worked for a newspaper in San Francisco. Fathers death

When he was 11 in 1885, Father dies of tuberculosis on May 5, leaving family with only $8 after expenses are paid. Family moves to Lawrence, Mass. to live with grandparents. Robert and Jeanie, his sister, dislike grandparents' sternness and rigorous discipline. High school

After a tricky start with education graduates high school in 1892 as the co-valedictorian of his class. The other Elinor White, whom hed fallen in love with the year before. After graduation, he became engaged to her. University Was accepted to Harvard University.

Dependent upon grandparents for financial support, enters Dartmouth College instead of Harvard because it is cheaper, and because grandparents blame Harvard for his father's bad habits. Bored by college life and restless, leaves Dartmouth at the end of December. School teacher After he leaves Dartmouth, he

starts teaching, something he does on and off until he goes to England in 1912. Back in those days, teachers in lower schools did not need to have a college education. Marriage In 1895, at the age of 21, he marries Elinor White.

The marriage, which lasts until her death in 1938, is sometimes quite turbulent. Robert and Elinor Frost, 1911 Children In 1896 their son Elliott is born. Hes the first of six children: Elliot, Lesley, Elinor, Carol,

Marjorie, Irma Four will die young, Elliot died when he was four, Elinor only lived a few days, Marjorie died of complications from giving birth and TB and his son, Carol, committed suicide. Harvard

In 1897 he passes Harvard College entrance examinations Borrows money from grandfather and enters Harvard as a freshman. But in 1899 he withdraws. Grandfathers legacy In 1901, Grandfather William

Prescott Frost dies. His will gives Frost a $500 annuity and use of his Derry poultry farm for ten years, after which the annuity is to be increased to $800 and Frost is to be given ownership of the farm. Move to England In 1912 he decides to live in England

for a few years and devote himself to writing full time. Sails with family on August 23. Stays in London briefly before renting a cottage in Beaconsfield, Buckinghamshire, 20 miles north of London. Publishing success A Boy's Will is published April 1.

Meets numerous literary figures, including Ezra Pound, Hilda Doolittle (H.D.), Ford Hermann Hueffer (Ford Madox Ford), and William Butler Yeats Literary encouragement Yeats tells Pound that A Boy's Will is "the best poetry written in America

for a long time". Friendship with Pound becomes strained "He says I must write something much more like vers libre or he will let me perish by neglect. He really threatens. Second book soon follows In 1914, North of Boston is

published Favorably reviewed in The Nation, The Outlook, The Times Literary Supplement, Pall Mall Gazette, The English Review, The Bookman, and The Daily News. War breaks out Amused by local concern that he may be a spy when war breaks out in August.

Learns that Henry Holt and Company will publish his books in the US. Helps him decide to return to America. Concerned that review by Pound may cause Americans to consider him to be one of Pound's "party of American literary refugees." Life as a professional poet From 1916 he is either teaching

poetry or acting as writer in residence. He makes a good living at poetry. Elinors death In March 1938 Elinor dies of heart failure in Gainesville, Florida. Frost collapses and is unable to attend cremation. Shortly after she dies, he asks another

woman, Kathleen Morrison, to marry him, but she declines, instead becoming his secretary for the rest of his life. Erratic behavior He is increasingly erratic during this period. This worries people as his sister ended her life in a mental institution. Two of his children also fought mental

illness, his son killing himself in part from the depression over Elinors death. 75th birthday honors In 1950 the US Senate adopts resolution honoring Frost on his 75th birthday (actually his 76th). Frost thought he was born in

1875 until he was 79 years old! Congressional recognition In 1960 Congress passes a bill awarding Frost a gold medal in recognition of his poetry. An elderly Frost

scratching his dog during an interview. Presidential honor In 1961 he is invited by the new president, John F. Kennedy, to be a part of his inauguration. Writes new poem for inauguration,

but is unable to read it in glare of bright sunlight. Recites "The Gift Outright. The End Plagued by ill health for the rest of his life, he dies shortly after midnight on January 29, 1963. Frost on The Road Not

Taken "I'll bet not half a dozen people can tell you who was hit and where he was hit in my Road Not Taken." He characterized himself in that poem particularly as "fooling my way along." Hed tell audiences that it was a tricky poem. Really a sly tease for

his friend According to Frost, it was really about his friend Edward Thomas, (an English poet) who when they walked together always sighed for not having taken another path than the one they took. The fun of the thing When Frost sent "The Road Not Taken"

to Thomas he was disappointed that Thomas failed to understand it was a poem about himself. Thomas on the poem: "I doubt if you can get anybody to see the fun of the thing without showing them and advising them which kind of laugh they are to turn on." Another fun use of

irony Frost gives the poem its twist and fun by the irony of the final stanza. He knows that in the future hell make his decision look more dramatic than it was in reality. It becomes grandiose in retrospect. What could he be saying about human nature?

Common symbol Frost took the common symbol, road, but then played with it. He was insistent upon the word road and not the more common path. He wanted to play up the mundane aspects of the work. Regular rhyme

scheme In the first stanza, Frost sets up a regular rhyme scheme set up as abaab, that is repeated, using a fresh set of rhymes, throughout the poem. But to keep the rhyme in the final line, we have to force it. What is Frost doing there?

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