Morality In Tom Jones

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The article discusses the moral-scheme of Henry Fielding’s novel Tom Jones that has been labeled as corrupt and immoral by most of its contemporary critics. It analysis the reasons for being treated as such. Seemingly immoral characters Tom’s admirable qualities are highlighted and what forces him to behave vilely is also studied. Instead finding him unrighteous, the author argues that he is normal human with its equal share of goodness and weakness that makes tom’s character a lifelike, a welcome change from divinely pure, pious and one- dimensional characters as portrayed by fielding’s contemporary novelists. Fielding did not want to create a necessarily moral text that ignored the truth of how people are. He believed human nature has capacity…show more content…
In Jonathan wild, Fielding had a double object to carry on his lifelong war against humbug, and to show how poorly vice rewarded its votaries. Both these aims underlie Tom Jones but both are subdued to a wider aim to show life as it is. The provision which we have here made is human nature. The implication is that, if we can see the whole of human nature we shall find that some of it is in itself ugly, and some in itself beautiful. That which is ugly, makes people unhappy; that which is beautiful makes them happy. Fielding was content to leave to Richardson the convention of society, of 'Good Form ' , as it is called -the code of Charles Grandson. Its place is taken in Tom Jones, if at all, by that 'prudence ' which Allworthy preached to Jones, and which is no more than the moderation that keeps a man out of it. The gist of the book 's moral purpose to show the Human nature , ugly and beautiful alike, raised to a high power of activity, so that ugly shall we clearly perceived. Incidentally meanness , cruelty, hypocrisy, lasciviousness will be found to bring unhappiness in their train; but is a worse punishment to be a Blifil than to suffer as Bilfil ultimately
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