Jude the Obscure

Jude the Obscure

Jude the Obscure Part 3, Chapter 2 Summary & Analysis

Summary
Analysis
One day both Jude and Sue have a day off, and they decide to take a trip together. Jude wants to visit some Gothic architecture, but Sue wants to see Corinthian instead. They take a train and visit an old castle, and Sue watches Jude examining the pictures of saints on the wall. She is clearly intrigued by his religious faith, which she herself seems to have moved beyond.
Corinthian architecture is associated with Rome, while Gothic is associated with the Christian mediaeval period, so this discussion of architecture reflects Sue and Jude’s respective religious beliefs. It becomes more clear that Sue has reasoned herself beyond religion.
Themes
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After the castle they go for a walk in the country, and they get lost in the expanses. They find a shepherd who invites them to spend the night at his cottage, as it is too late to return to Melchester that night. Sue comments that she enjoys the shepherd’s simple, naturalistic life, and especially his great freedom. Jude dismisses this, calling Sue a “product of civilization” and an “urban miss.”
Jude is still thinking of his idealized Sue illuminating the word “Allelujah,” as the real Sue has not yet stepped off her pedestal and shown how unique she is. Though in many ways she is modern and revolutionary, Hardy also associates Sue (like many of his heroines) with a pagan freedom and closeness to Nature.
Themes
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