Taking into account the latest criticism, Langbaum discusses Hardy's fiction and poetry from various contemporary points of view, so as to show Hardy as a still-powerful literary presence. Thus the first chapter, 'Hardy and Lawrence', shows that Hardy's psychological insights into the unconscious and sexuality seem contemporary with Lawrence's and ours. Chapter 2, 'The Issue of Hardy's Poetry', asks whether the recently increased estimation of Hardy's poetry expresses a reaction against the modernist poets, and whether in comparison to these modernists Hardy emerges as a first-rate minor poet. After attempting to formulate the distinction between major and minor poetry, Langbaum concludes that Hardy is major, but that his greatest poetry is to be found in the prose of his best novels - an argument developed through discussions of the four pastoral novels. The last chapter shows how Hardy rounds out his treatment of sexuality by reversing his usual emphasis on it, by minimising sexuality in The Mayor of Casterbridge and in his last novel The Well-Beloved. Langbaum's argument is largely new, his readings of Hardy's works are often original and always sensitive and strong in psychological insight.Reseña del editor:
Taking into account the latest criticism, Langbaum discusses Hardy's fiction and poetry from various contemporary points of view so as to show Hardy as a still-powerful literary presence.
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