In The Ashgate Research Companion to Thomas Hardy, some of the most prominent Hardy specialists working today offer an overview of Hardy scholarship and suggest new directions in Hardy studies. The contributors cover virtually every area relevant to Hardy's fiction and poetry, including philosophy, palaeontology, biography, science, film, popular culture, beliefs, gender, music, masculinity, tragedy, topography, psychology, metaphysics, illustration, bibliographical studies and contemporary response. While several collections have surveyed the Hardy landscape, no previous volume has been composed especially for scholars and advanced graduate students. This companion is specially designed to aid original research on Hardy and serve as the critical basis for Hardy studies in the new millennium. Among the features are a comprehensive bibliography that includes not only works in English but, in acknowledgment of Hardy's explosion in popularity around the world, also works in languages other than English.
Classified as ’Research Essential' by Baker & Taylor YBP Library Services 'The Ashgate Research Companion does include some illuminating interpretative essays, including Andrew Radford on Hardy’s humanism and Dennis Taylor, always excellent, on Hardy’s reading of Shakespeare; there is an admirable account of Moments of Vision by Gillian Beer, and a deft study of hands in Hardy by J. Hillis Miller; but the book’s main contribution lies in its very full surveys of the secondary literature, of Hardy on film and in illustrations, its census of Hardy manuscripts, and its extensive bibliography: I imagine it will soon be appearing at the top of reading lists for Masters courses.' Times Literary Supplement 'This is a superb research tool and interesting in and of itself… Highly recommended. Graduate students and researchers.' Choice '… the chapters include many notes directing researchers to foundational resources. Additionally, Morgan has wisely allowed lengthier chapters for areas that have yet to be developed, and the variety of authors, the diversity of perspectives and areas covered, and the tools she provides in this book make it a necessary addition for anyone embarking on Hardy research.' N-BOL19 'No individual, however talented and energetic, could hope to match the sheer range of expertise, in so many different aspects, brilliantly displayed here… Fully complementing the bibliographical aspects, and further helping to put the Research Companion into a class of its own in its range and depth, are the excellent historical, philosophical, critical and other contributions, including essays on music, science, religion, topography, psychology, gender - even cinema, and Hardy's illustrators… it is easy to believe that Hardyans undertaking research in any of the various topics so richly presented here will find much to inform and inspire in this cornucopia of a book.' Thomas Hardy Journal ’Thomas Hardy enthusiasts as well as serious scholars
Contents: Introduction, Rosemarie Morgan; Part I Bibliographic Studies: Hardy bibliographies, Charles P.C. Pettit; The first 100 years of Hardy criticism: 1871-1971, W. Eugene Davis; Hardy archives, Charles P.C. Pettit. Part II Historical and Cultural Context: Hardy and Victorian popular culture: performing modernity in music-hall and melodrama, Richard Nemesvari; Hardy in (a time of) transition, Suzanne J. Flynn; Hardy and law: sexual relations and 'matrimonial divergence', William A. Davis. Part III An Early Literary Influence and a Late Topographical Construct: From Stratford to Casterbridge: the influence of Shakespeare, Dennis Taylor; The evolution of Wessex, Rosemarie Morgan with Scott Rode. Part IV Bodies of Knowledge and Belief: Philosophy, metaphysics and music in Hardy's cosmic vision, Mark Asquith; One church, several faiths, no Lord: Thomas Hardy, art and belief, Timothy Hands; Evolution and deep time in selected works of Hardy, Kevin Padian; Hardy's poetic cosmology and the 'new astronomy', Pamela Gossin; Hardy and scientific humanism, Andrew Radford; 'Tune' and 'thought': the uses of music in Hardy's poetry, John Hughes. Part V Critical Approaches: Psychological approaches to Thomas Hardy, Suzanne Keen; Hardy and gender, Judith Mitchell; Hardy and the cinema: 'a plethoric growth in knowledge', Paul J. Niemeyer. Part VI Genre and Case Studies: Hardy's short stories, Sophie Gilmartin; The Dynasts: Hardy's contribution to the epic tradition, Harold Orel; Hardy: the driftiness of tragedy, Dale Kramer; Hardy and masculinity: the case of A Pair of Blue Eyes and Jude the Obscure, Phillip Mallett; Reading absences in Hardy's lyrics: representation and recognition, DeSales Harrison. Part VII Illustrators and Biographers: Illustrating Hardy's novels, Ian Rogerson; Hardy and the biographers, Phillip Mallett. Part VIII The Millennium: Sage Writers in Tribute to Their Muse: 'The proudest songster of them all': some thoughts on three 'everyday' lyrics, Tom Paulin;