Why do you think Thomas Hardy wrote '"The Darkling Thrush" and why do you think Joseph Conrad wrote "The Secret Sharer"?

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Known as the "good, gray poet," Thomas Hardy wrestled with his religious beliefs and his notion of the Immanent Will, the blind force which drives the universe more through indifference and caprice than any firm will and in the future may see and understand itself.  In his poem "The Darkling Thrush," Hardy's philosophical struggles certainly emerge:

So little cause for carolings

Of such ecstatic sound

Was written on terrestrial things

Afar or nigh around,

That I could think there trembled through

His happy good-night air

Some blessed Hope, whereof he knew

And I was unaware.

Hardy, also, wrote this poem about the bleak wintry landscape as a metaphor for the close of the nineteenth century and the joyful song of the darkling thrush as a symbol of the dawning twentieth century.

Like much of Joseph Conrad's work, his story "The Secret Sharer" is interpersonal.  Based upon an experience of Conrad's in the 1880s when he was forced by an emergency to take command of a ship, Conrad claimed that he often saw the Captain when he went ashore on one English seaport.  Conrad was a lonely child himself; both his parents died when he was very young.  His exploration of the other self comes at a time when psychology was examining "the war in the member" as pschologists such as Freud and Jung examined the inner self, and the unconscious self.  "The Secret Sharer" examines this duality in man.