ON THE INFLUENCE OF HARDY'S RELIGIOUS THOUGHTS OVER THE CHARACTERS IN TESS
本文首先介绍了圣经文化, 托马斯•哈代的宗教思想以及两者在文学史上的地位；然后阐述哈代的宗教思想与圣经存在的关联性, 从哈代在作品创作中对圣经文化的娴熟运用，哈代宗教思想的形成和演变和历代学者对哈代的宗教思想的评价等三个方面进行具体的分析；最后以《苔丝》中的主要人物作为研究的重点，如苔丝、安琪和艾力克。通过分析作品中的几个主要人物的命运及所象征的宗教意义，反映了哈代作品中所隐含的浓厚的宗教色彩，从而使读者更好地理解哈代的宗教思想在小说的主要人物塑造方面所起的重要作用。
This paper begins with the Bible culture, Hardy's religious thoughts as well as their status in the literary history. It then elaborates the connection between the Bible and Hardy's religious thoughts, specifically from the use of Bible culture in the Hardy's creation, the formation of Hardy's religious thoughts and the scholars' comments on Hardy's religious thoughts three aspects. Finally, it focuses on the major characters in Tess, for instance, Tess, Angel and Alec. By analyzing the fate of several major characters in the novel and the religious meaning, together with the dense religious color, in order to give the readers a better understanding of the significance of Hardy's religious thoughts in shaping the major characters in Tess.
Keywords: Hardy; religion; Tess; Angel; Alec
1. Introduction 1
2. Bible and Hardy's religious thoughts 2
2.1 The Bible's status in Literary history 2
2.2 The use of Bible culture in Hardy's creation 2
2.3 The formation and evolution of Hardy's religious thoughts 3
2.4 The scholars' comments on Hardy's religious thoughts 5
3. The influence of Hardy's religious thoughts in creating Tess 6
3.1 The connection between Bible and Tess 6
3.2 Inflections of Tess on Hardy's religious thoughts 6
4. The influence of Hardy's religious thoughts in creating Angel 9
4.1 The connection between the name of Angel and Bible. 9
4.2 The impact of Angel on Tess's tragic fate 9
4.3 The Criticism and Inheritance of Christian reflected by Hardy in shaping Angel 10
5. The influence of Hardy's religious thoughts in creating Alec 12
5.1 The connection between the name of Alec and Bible 12
5.2 The impact of Alec on Tess's tragic fate 12
5.3 The Criticism and Inheritance of Christian reflected by Hardy in shaping Alec 13
6. Conclusion 14
Thomas Hardy (1840-1928) is one of the greatest English novelists between the 18th Century and the 20th century (Victorian period). Hardy is also a cross-century literary giant. During his whole life, he left us a lot of valuable spiritual Products. Tess of the D'Urbervilles is the most influential one of all his work.Religion has a profound influence on the works of European and American writers. From a series works of Thomas Hardy, clearly we can see the influence of the Bible on him. Nevertheless, though Hardy failed to eliminate the limitation of Tragic predestination and religious tradition, By the case study analyzing on the works of Thomas Hardy, especially the characters in Tess, this paper makes an research on the distinguished religious sense of Thomas Hardy as well as its cause of formation and the influence of the religious thoughts in his creating .The research will be focused on the Bible' influence and the main characters' connection with religion in Tess.
2. Bible and Hardy's religious thoughts
Tess of the D'Urbervilles unanimously considered a masterpiece in the literary history of the world. From Tess's fate, we can clearly see the influence of the Bible on Hardy. The spirit of the Bible has deeply penetrated into this novel. Even the archetypes of its main characters can be traced in the Bible. Hardy could not free himself from the domination of Christianity and fell inevitably into pessimism and even determinism, but he made a bitter attack on the hypocrisy of the existent social ethics and Christian doc-trines through his creation of some characters and a series of related imageries.
2.1 The Bible's status in literary history
Consider the great historical fact that, for three centuries, this book has been woven into the life of all that is best and noblest in English history; that it has become the national epic of Britain, and is as familiar to noble and simple, from John-o'-Groat's House to Land's End, as Dante and Tasso once were to the Italians; that it is written in the noblest and purest English, and abounds in exquisite beauties of pure literary form; and finally, that it forbids the hind who never left his village to be ignorant of the existence of other countries and other civilization , and of a great past stretching back to the furthest limits of the oldest civilization of the world. The classical, yet popular, character of the Bible has been already insisted on.
2.2 The use of Bible culture in Hardy's creation
Tess in the novel kept looking for moral redemption and released from the evil hut, but the reality of society renders the destiny of Tess. Hardy, the author of the novel, once considered the whole story "a joke the leader of all gods had made to Tess". Alec was the cause of Tess' miserable fate, and meanwhile Angel who was truly loved by Tess abandoned her ruthlessly. The author emphatically lashes the view of being moral and thus being blessed by God in his work. At the same time, however, the structure of the novel contains "sudden turning", "finding" and "tribulation" which run though Gospel of Bible. Therefore, a sort of double connection links Tess of the D'Urbervilles and Bible closely.
Alec's first words to Tess, "Well, my Beauty, what can I do for you?" indicate that his first impression of Tess is only one of sexual magnetism. Alec then proceeds to charm Tess by pushing strawberries into her mouth and pressing roses into her bosom. These fruits of love are an indication of Alec's lust and sexual desire for Tess as he preys upon her purity and rural innocence. Tess unwillingly becomes a victim to Alec's inhumane, violent and an aggressive sexual advance as Alec, always the master of opportunities, takes advantage of her whilst alone in the woods and rapes her. Tess has fallen subject to the more cruel side of human nature as Alec seizes upon her vulnerability. After this sexual violation and corruption of innocence, Tess flees home and although she has escaped the trap of the sexually rapacious Alec for the time being, her circumstance is similar to that of a wounded animal - her blood of innocence has been released. At this time Hardy gives reference to Shakespeare's ‘The Rape of Lucrece' -'where the serpent hisses the sweet birds sing' suggesting that Alec was equivalent to Satan tempting Eve. Tess is undoubtedly a victim and her lack of understanding over such matters only increases the guilt that already embodies her.. To add further to her shame she chances upon a holy man who paints exerts from the bible around the countryside. In red accusatory letters she reads "THY, DAMNATION, SLUMBERETH, NOT" and is horrified to think how relevant it is to her recent misfortunes.