A Keynote Lecture for the Thomas Hardy Society Conference 2021

Mark Chutter - The White Apron, The Skimmity Ride and Subversive Religion in Hardy's Mixen Lane

A Keynote Lecture for the Thomas Hardy Society Conference 2021

Friday 16th July at 9.15am

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"Vice ran freely..."

This presentation considers Mixen Lane from The Mayor of Casterbridge as a microcosm of nineteenth-century pauperism. Hardy's description of Durnover is considered alongside the vestige of the white apron described in Mixen Lane, a signifier of prostitution and the fallen woman. It will also discuss the Skimmity Ride, and how Hardy describes this in terms of subversive religion - a pagan tradition and superstition.

Mark Chutter is Head of English at Queen Elizabeth's School in Wimborne, and is the Academic Director of the Thomas Hardy Society. His family all originate from Mill Street in Fordington. As part of her gift to Mark (prior to her death) his grandmother regaled Mark with numerous stories about Mixen Lane, and how her own mother would often see Hardy walking around Dorchester 'deep in thought', but not too busy to smile a greeting at her whenever their paths crossed.

Tickets: For those who are not attending the conference in its entirety - £10 (£8 for THS Members)

Please book here: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/the-white-apron-the-skimmity-and-subversive-religion-in-hardys-mixen-lane-tickets-155787242837

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