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In the world's classics, Thomas Hardy stands head and shoulder among literary greats like Homer, Geoffrey Chaucer, Rudyard Kipling, Ben Jonson, Henry James, Sir Walter Scott, Robert Louis Stevenson, Herman Merville and Victorian contemporaries T.E. Lawrence and Jane Austen…
This impressive body of works consists of three collections of short stories (The Distracted Preacher and Other Stories, A Changed Man and Wessex Tales), seven poetry collections (Selected Poems; Select Poems of William Barnes, a memorial; Winter Words in Various Moods and Meters; Late Lyrics and Earlier; Time's Laughingstocks; Human Shows For Fantasies, Songs and Trifles; and Vestiges of an Old Flame), three essays (The Science of Fiction, The Profitable Reading of Fiction and Candor in English Fiction), an epic drama written in blank verse (The Dynasts), an autobiography, and a slew of novels adding up to 17, some of whose titles, notably Far From the Madding Crowd and Desperate Remedies, have gained metaphorical prominence as descriptive phrases.
Hardy's bumper crop of creative works could only come as indeed it does from a wide swath of different moods, inspirations, preoccupations, perspectives and even settings as he went about the writer's common task of configuring the human condition. ...
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