Coursework on ‘The Son’s Veto’ by Thomas Hardy
‘The mother in this story sacrifices everything for her son who doesn’t even seem to care about her. Women today would not act like this. ‘ Do you agree? I agree with this statement because women today are a lot more independent than they were in Victorian times, they have a lot more freedom to do what they want and not want they are told to do by men. There have been a lot of feminist demonstrations and protests to give women the independence they have today, to wear what clothes they like, to get what job they like, and generally what they do.
I intend to look closely at each of the characters from ‘The Son’s Veto’ and study their relationships and compare it those of women today and how they would act differently to Sophy in the story did. In the story Sophy, a widowed cripple is asked by an old friend, Sam to marry him, but to save her son’s social status and education she decides against it, even though she wants to. The relationship between Sophy and her son Randolph isn’t that good, Sophy shows a lot of love towards Randolph but he condescends her because he more educated than her, he always corrects her and patronises her a lot because he thinks he’s a lot better than her.
For example when she says ‘He have been so comfortable threes last few hours that I am sure he cannot have missed us’ and he corrects her ‘Has, dear mother – not have! Surely you know that by this time! ‘ Infinitesimal sins. Revenant Twycott chose to marry Sophy and lowered his social class a lot, ‘Mr Twycott knew perfectly well that he had committed social suicide by this step, despite Sophy’s spotless character, and he had taken his measures accordingly. ‘ Sophy worked for Rev.
Twycott, and he married her and was forced to move away due to his social class going down so much. They have a son, Randolph who is very well educated, and then Rev. Twycott dies. They didn’t really show that much love for each other, just affection. ‘Her life became insupportably dreary; she could not take walks, and no interest in going for drives, or, indeed, in travelling anywhere. ‘ She is lonely and sad, ‘The next time we get a glimpse of her is when she appears in the mournful attire of a window. and she is asked to marry Sam, her former gardener and friend but her selfish son doesn’t allow her to, this is another example of how Randolph basically controls her life and doesn’t do what she wants, ‘As yet he was far from being man enough – if he ever would be – to rate these sins of hers at their true infinitesimal value’. All he cares about there is his social status, her mother marrying Sam would have brought it down and destroyed his reputation with all the upper class people, and also his education.
Sam and Sophy walked and talked together, they didn’t think it was wrong ‘but supposed it conventionally to be very wrong indeed. ‘ Sam loved her a lot and waited for years for her to marry him, but she couldn’t, ‘Her lameness became more confirmed as time went on, and she seldom or never left the house in the long southern thoroughfare, where she seemed to be pining her heart away. “Why mayn’t I say to Sam that I’ll marry him?
Why mayn’t I? she would murmur plaintively to herself when no-one was near’ After four years of Sam waiting, Sophy dies, Randolph was a priest at her funeral looking ‘black as a cloud’ at Sam who was standing in the road. I think that if it was today, Sophy wouldn’t have listened to her son, she would do what she wanted to do, and there is not really much to do with ‘class’ these days, especially not going down a class if you marry someone. I think that Randolph was very selfish in trying to control his mother and not seeing how upset she was when she got all lonely and sad, he didn’t comfort her. This would never happen now due to sexual equality.