Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  

Episode 64 - Forgive and Forget?

Recommended Posts

The drama continues as Sue arrives at Philloston’s house in preparation to remarry him. But can she go through with it? Can he? Can Michael? And later, Michael asks friend and author Gary Shteyngart what the hell is going on in this book.

Share this post

Link to post

A couple thoughts on this episode.  First, I take issue with Michael saying that “fate,” through Hardy, keeps destroying Jude and Sue’s lives. I think this is an oversimplification, or, at least, an imprecise use of the word “fate.”  I think Hardy, in all of his books, is much more interested In showing us the very complex web of influences that affect our lives, and the characters’ struggle to make sense of their world.  While Jude’s aunt suggests the family is cursed in marriage, are we really supposed to agree?  That would be a form of fatalism, of sorts.  However, we cannot deny that the social mores of the time and Jude and Sue’s own actions also play a large part in what happens to them.  I imagine the book as a sort of primal scream of frustration and confusion. That extreme state would help to explain why Sue is so desperate to find a stable source of meaning in the church.  


My second thought is about the guests Michael has on.  I did not really understand the point of the guest here, and I wish Michael would talk to someone who could help him understand the context, etc. of the book.  I get it, part of the point of the podcast is that Michal do a not know anything about the book or author, etc. And he is doing a beautiful job of reading the book in that state—really impressive.  But why such an aversion to learning more?  It would only help him appreciate the context of Hardy’s tragic vision.  Maybe in the end he can talk to an honest-to-goodness Hardy scholar and clean up some of his misperceptions, etc.  


Still my favorite podcast!

Share this post

Link to post

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this