Once victim, Always victim, that`s the law
- Pages: 2
- Word count: 493
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Tess always seems to be the victim in the story, but is that really the case ? Personally, I think that she is being victimised because of her naivity, and that Hardy tries to make us take her side. When Alec rapes her, she does nothing to disuade him from his attempt, all except for muttering ” stop “. This comes back to haunt her during her relationship with Angel Clare, when she tells him what happened.
He thought that she was pure and virginal, that is what he wanted to see when he looked t her, but he didn`t look close enough to see her pain, so Tess is haunted again by the evnts of her past. Alec tries it on again when Tess goes with him after Angel leaves, but she has learned from the past to stop it from happening, and she kills him, stabbing him in the torso once. She leaves, terrified, and finds Angel on the wharf, waiting for her and tells him what happened. He takes her back to an old house, where they stay until they are discovered.
They then take flight over the countryside, finally resting at Stonehenge where the police finally catch up to them, and take Tess into the dawn. In relation to this, many women who have had an experiance of rape find it hard to become accustomed to a genuine loving relationship without having psychological flashbacks to the rape. It is at times like this when the quotation ” once a victim, always a victim, thats the law ” comes into effect. It always seems like they have done something wrong, but cannot explain what because they did not do anything.
Also, in modern day society, people who have commited offences suchas iolence on the street or burglary are always brought in for a ‘ line up ‘ at the police station, thus making them feel like they are being punished when they have already served their sentence. This can tie in with Tess, as they know they have commited wrongly in the past but they cannot help or erase thier experiences, they just try to get on with their lives, but cannot because of their past. Tess`s experiences can teach us a lot about the era in which she lived, and the social structures of the time.
If a woman is raped, then she is seen as ‘ unclean ‘ and no longer virginal. This should not be allowed, because a woman should remain a virgin until she has sex with her consent, and not be forced into it by any man, or indeed woman. The end part of the quotation ” thats the law ” has many meanings, but i think that the main and most obvious one is that the police want to catch anyone they can, regardless of whether they commited the offence, just going on past records. The quotation applies to real life, and to Tess`s era in equal measure.