The Mayor of Casterbridge | Study Guide

Thomas Hardy

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Michael Henchard, Chapter 12 he mayor of Casterbridge is not so thriving in his mind as it seems he might be from the state of his pocket. Sources: Encyclopaedia Britannica, Thomas Hardy in Our Time by Robert Langbaum, Victorian Web Copyright © 2018 Course Hero, Inc. Deception Characters may lie for good reasons but with bad results. Rivalry Henchard sees Farfrae as a threat both in business and love. Marriage as a Transaction Marriage is a commercial transaction, unromantic and depressing. Themes Kind man; attracts Henchard’s former lover, supposed daughter, and business away from him Donald Farfrae Susan’s morally upright daughter with the sailor who bought her; marries Farfrae Elizabeth-Jane Newson Henchard’s meek wife; returns to him in need of financial support and dies soon after Susan Henchard Impulsive, domineering, but honest grain merchant; mayor of Casterbridge Michael Henchard Main Characters Hardy focused on rural life, often writing about a fictionalized version of Dorset, England, where he grew up. His works frequently touch on fatalism, alienation, the complexities of marriage and sex, and other complicated themes. He wrote nearly 1,000 poems, several volumes of short stories, and 14 novels. THOMAS HARDY1840–1928 Author His business fails after his wife dies, and he learns the daughter is not his. Tragedy Strikes He reunites with his wife and daughter 18 years later and tries to start over. The Family Reunites A drunk and angry Henchard auctions off his wife and baby but soon repents. Henchard Sells His Family In a moment of anger 18 years ago, impulsive and drunk Michael Henchard sold his wife and baby daughter at auction. Now sober and wealthy, he reunites with his family, and happiness seems within reach. But Henchard cannot learn from the past, and this flaw spells tragedy. One Bad Decision Ruins Everything OVERVIEW English Original Language 1886 Year Published Thomas Hardy Author The Mayor of Casterbridge Tragedy Novel

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