Pater and the genealogy of Hardy's modernity

Natarajan, Uttara. 2006. Pater and the genealogy of Hardy's modernity. SEL Studies in English Literature 1500-1900, 46(4), pp. 849-61. ISSN 1522 9270 [Article]

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This essay will show that Thomas Hardy's formulation of modernity in The Return of the Native draws substantially on Walter Pater, even as it remains, in so doing, peculiarly his own. Both Hardy's narrator and Clym Yeobright exemplify a Wordsworthian identity or consciousness that owes less to William Wordsworth's self-representations than it does to Pater's essay "On Wordsworth" (1874), published only a few years prior to The Return of the Native. In depicting the outside or physical form of modernity, Hardy draws on another of Pater's celebrated modern personae, "Lady Lisa," of Studies in the History of the Renaissance (1873).

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English and Comparative Literature


September 2006Published

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12 Mar 2009 15:41

Last Modified:

11 Oct 2017 11:36

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Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.


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