Write a critical analysis of the poem "In Church" by the poet Thomas Hardy.

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

The poem "In Church" is representative of Hardy's many religious poems. Thomas Hardy began as a novelist and turned to writing poetry later in life. Hardy wrote with a pessimistic outlook on life not only in his fiction but in his poetry as well.  His characters often are the subject of an unkind and indifferent fate.

Form:

The two stanzas follow a set rhyme scheme: A B ABCC. The poem is narrated with a third person point of view. The setting is the auditorium of a church then the vestry to the side of the pulpit.  The poem is straightforward and clear in its diction and vocabulary.  There are three sentences in the poem.

Theme:  A person may not always be exactly who he appears to be. The watcher of the minister who loved and admired him may be impacted by his deceptive manner.  On the other hand, it was only a man looking in the mirror and looking at himself to recall the crowd pleasing servmon.

Summary:

1st Stanza

The beginning of the poem takes on the feeling of a hymn...

(The entire section contains 539 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now

Start your 48-hour free trial to unlock this answer and thousands more. Enjoy eNotes ad-free and cancel anytime.

Start your 48-Hour Free Trial

Already a member? Log in here.

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team

Posted on