Far from the Madding Crowd

By Thomas Hardy; Rosemarie Morgan (Editor); Shannon Russell (Editor)
(Penguin Books, Paperback, 9780141439655, 480pp.)

Publication Date: April 2003

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Thomas Hardy's impassioned novel of courtship in rural life
In Thomas Hardy's first major literary success, independent and spirited Bathsheba Everdene has come to Weatherbury to take up her position as a farmer on the largest estate in the area. Her bold presence draws three very different suitors: the gentleman-farmer Boldwood, the soldier-seducer Sergeant Troy, and the devoted shepherd Gabriel Oak. Each, in contrasting ways, unsettles her decisions and complicates her life, and tragedy ensues, threatening the stability of the whole community. One of his first works set in the semi-fictional region of Wessex, Hardy's novel of swift passion and slow courtship is imbued with his evocative descriptions of rural life and landscapes, and with unflinching honesty about sexual relationships.
This edition, based on Hardy's original 1874 manuscript, is the complete novel he never saw published, and restores its full candor and innovation. Rosemarie Morgan's introduction discusses the history of its publication, as well as the biblical and classical allusions that permeate the novel.

About the Author
Thomas Hardy was born in 1840 in Higher Bockhampton (Upper Bockhampton in his day), a hamlet in the parish of Stinsford to the east of Dorchester in Dorset, England, where his father Thomas (1811-1892) worked as a stonemason and local builder.

ROSEMARIE MORGAN, editor and publisher of the annual Hardy Review, has taught at Yale University since 1984 and is currently holding a research fellowship. She is president of the Hardy Association, vice president of the Hardy Society, editorial consultant to Rivista di Studi Vittoriani, "Years Work" essayist for Victorian Poetry and has published the holograph manuscript of Far From the Madding Crowd as well as essays on Charlotte Bronte, Toni Morrison, Mary Chestnut, and women writers of the American Frontier. Her major works are Women and Sexuality in the Novels of Thomas Hardy (1988) and Cancelled Words (1992).

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