What Do I Read Next?
Richard D. Altick’s Victorian People and Ideas (1973) describes the social structure of Victorian England, with chapters on technological change, social structure, art, and religion.
Hardy’s novel Far from the Madding Crowd (1874) is a love story set in rural England and marks his first real literary success.
The Cambridge Companion to Thomas Hardy, edited by Dale Kramer and released in 2001 by Cambridge University Press, collects critical essays on Hardy by prominent scholars.
Sally Mitchell’s Daily Life in Victorian England (1996) provides a thorough overview of what it was like to live in Victorian England. Mitchell covers topics such as education, health and medicine, technology, and the significance of the ever-expanding British Empire.
James Morris’s Pax Britannica: The Climax of an Empire (1968) describes how the empire grew and how the British people felt about it.
The Oxford Reader’s Companion to Hardy (2000), edited by Norman Page, contains a wealth of information on Hardy, including an index of Hardy’s poems and characters and a glossary of dialect words and expressions used in his writings.