An Indiscretion in the Life of an Heiress and Other Stories
Oxford University Press, 1998 - 266 oldal
`An Indiscretion in the Life of a Heiress', is one of ten stories - three collaborative, all uncollected - that are brought together in this volume. `Indiscretion', derived from Hardy's unpublished first novel The Poor Man and the Lady, represents one of his earliest confrontations with the class and gender issues which were to remain central to his fiction throughout his life. Several of the other stories, notably `Destiny and a Blue Cloak', `The Spectre of the Real', and `The Unconquerable', raise similar questions, while at the same time illustrating, in typical Hardyan fashion, life's little (or somewhat larger) ironies. Some of the other stories are less characteristic: `Old Mrs Chuncle', for example, approximates moral fable more closely than is usual for Hardy, while `Our Exploits at West Poley' is anomalous not only in being (like `The Thieves Who Couldn't Help Sneezing') a story written for children but also in experimenting with unreliable narration. Such stories are signifcant precisley because they incoporate varieties of technique, subject matter, and genre that are otherwise found in the Hardy canon either rarely or not at all.
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