This week in my classes we are all very tired, because it’s almost the end of term. We’re finishing Jude the Obscure in the 19th-century novels class, and Wednesday in my graduate seminar was our second session on Hester and the last meeting for the course overall. I think I’m finally tired of ending up with Jude: “nobody did come, because nobody does” (and variations, such as “‘Throat–water–Sue–darling–drop of water–please–O please!’ No water came…”) is just not the best note to go out on. Speaking of conclusions, though, the ending of Hester proved very provocative, as it should, given the way it flouts the conventions of the marriage plot novel and also frustrates readings of Hester’s story as any kind of Bildungsroman. Now we move into exams and papers, and perhaps in between grading and managing fellowship applications and admissions, I can also get the last tasks done on the anthology that I hope to submit to Broadview in January!
Rohan MaitzenDepartment of English
Halifax, Nova Scotia
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