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Tess of the D'Urbervilles

Tess of the D'Urbervilles


by Thomas Hardy

Current Events & Pop Culture

Available to teachers only as part of the Tess of the D'Urbervilles Teacher Pass

Tess of the D'Urbervilles Teacher Pass includes:

  • Assignments & Activities
  • Reading Quizzes
  • Current Events & Pop Culture articles
  • Discussion & Essay Questions
  • Challenges & Opportunities
  • Related Readings in Literature & History

Sample of Current Events & Pop Culture

New York Times + PBS = So Much Smartness

Ouch! This reviewer definitely doesn't hold back on his criticism of the PBS adaptation of Tess. If you thought PBS could do no (educational) wrong, think again. This is a particularly helpful link if you want to add on to our "Understanding the Tough Stuff" activity.


"The embellishments cross the line from irritating to laughable when Tess and Alec d'Urberville (amusingly played by Hans Matheson as a 19th-century version of Chuck Bass, the 'Gossip Girl' character) have their fateful encounter in the woods, a moment that Hardy left entirely to his readers' imaginations. The filmmakers insist on showing it to us, but manage to maintain Hardy's ambiguity—rape or seduction?—through the liberal use of dry ice and dim lighting."