ANALYSIS OF “THE WITHERED ARM”
BY THOMAS HARDY
I found it quite interesting however, it is too co-incidental, is not even realistic, one of Hardy’s characteristics is that his stories are known to bbe realistic but this story is just pathetic and depressing plus I believe Hardy was a hypocrit, in his stories he shows his hatred towards upper class people and he is somehow critical of marriage, however he married some woman he hated just to get into a higher class within society. I love this story because it is easy to write an essay on on and it is a quick and simple way of writting a story which i understand and which does gie people a view of what it was like in those days. I am rather fond of this story despite the obvious flaws. I concede the point that the plot is weak in points and the characters are underdeveloped but I feel that the barely concealed underlying tensions the text a certain depth that can only be appreciated when it is read in context. This short story gives real insight into the political and social problems of the period and I personally feel that for a work so short in length this is a pretty impressive feat. I would also like to state, before I get accused of ‘false comments’, I am currently in my second Year of an English degree course and I would strenuously argue that there is a lot of depth to this story, if seen in a critical light.
The short story, whist difficult to define, has a number of common traits which can be attributed to each story. John Bowland admits: “In truth there have been hundreds of efforts to define this most elusive and tantalising of fictional forms.” Whilst it can be claimed the short story genre is impossible to classify, attempts include that of Pritchett, who believes: “The novel tells us everything, ...
Can I suggest looking at a bible particularly the Book of Matthew. This may lead you to a moral in the tale. I too am studying this at the moment and find it a compelling tale. Hardy writes in an evangelical style. i’m sure i had read he felt a sense of loss of christian values within society of the time. i am sure given his rural background he would have felt a loss of the ruralisation into the new industrialisation. given his short stories were aimed at magazine readers i had a sense of him preaching to the common folk. there is a message in there if you’re willing to look at the actions and intentions of each of the characters and of course each of there outcomes. I understand that the story is complicated and some do not understand but I object to some labelling the story ‘crap’. I am studying this story for my GCSE Literature and am currently writing coursework on the piece. I do not fully understand everything that happens in the story but my option is that it is brilliant and shows some real insight into the lives of the people in those times. Personnally, from reading the content above i think that Thomas Hardys Withered Arm is quite possibly the most terribly written pises of pre 1914 writing i have ever read. I am a regular on this site and am disgusted you would even contaminate your page with this herrendous excuse of a story. My daughter is currently studying this piece of text for her English literature GCSE. I think that this is an absolute disgrace!