What is Hardy's attitude to the residents of the Heath?

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To begin, the residents of the Heath refers to the residents of Egdon Heath in Thomas Hardy’s nineteenth-century novel The Return of the Native. Authors from a more illustrious background might have presented the residents of the Heath as unkempt and rough people from a rural background. However, Thomas Hardy himself hailed from a rural region in England, one not unlike Egdon Heath. This similarity in backgrounds is evident in the ways Hardy presents the Yeobrights, the Cantles, the Nunsuches, and other characters. These residents of Edgon Heath might be uneducated in all things academic, but the characters are well-versed in the ways of the world and are often quite advanced in arenas such as the equality and liberty of women. The...

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