Tom Jones, by Henry Fielding is a novel that is identical to a soap opera. This book deals with everything from treachery to lust to deceit. He writes about a man and woman’s love for one another and that nothing can stand in their way. Class separates them and they will not let that stop them. “Acquired a discretion and prudence very uncommon in one of his lively parts.” This is a quote from Squire Allworthy to Tom.
I believe that Fielding’s purpose in writing this novel was purely to entertain. He also added stabs at the class society in medieval England. He wrote this novel to inspire hope in the people of his time. He wanted them to go for their dreams and never to give up hope. But most of all this was for entertainment. Humans like to see lives that are in more turmoil than their own. This is why we have soap operas on television today.
He achieves this by using characters that seem to be imaginable. He puts these characters in amazing situations. When the reader believes that they have something pinned he puts in another twist that sends your senses spiraling. A specific instance in the novel is when the reader finds out that Mrs. Waters is actually Jenny Jones who is Tom’s mother. He sleeps with Mrs. Waters not knowing this. Fielding does not unveil this secret until the end of the novel.
The major problem in the book is simple. There is a deceitful man named Blifil. He and Tom are going after the same woman, Sophia Western. Blifil is a kaniving person and besmirches the reputation of Tom. He makes up lies that hurt Tom’s chances with Sophia. Tom is also a bastard and Sophia’s father does not want her to marry a bastard. But he does want her to marry Blifil because he is in line to inherit a large estate. After arguments and many other incidences the truth is revealed. Everyone finds out that Tom is the good one and Blifil is the bad one. Tom also gets the girl.
Henry Fielding was born on April 22, 1707, at Sharpham Park in Somersetshire to well-situated, upper-class parents. His mother was the grand daughter of Sir Henry gold, Baron of the Exchequer, and his father, Edmund, fought against the forces of Louis XIV under the Duke of Marlborough, who eventually rose to the rank of lieutenant general. Fielding was home school as was Tom Jones in the novel. A clerk-man from t…
… he does not know that Tom is really his nephew, he treats Tom like a son.
Jenny Jones – She is a servant to the schoolmaster, Mr. Partridge. She is accused of being Tom’s mother. Tom has an affair with her at Upton Inn. She changes her name to Mrs. Waters.
Mr. Partridge – He is the schoolmaster. His is falsely accused of being Tom’s father and is bannished. He also takes another name, Little Benjamin.
Captain Blifil – A hipocrate who is only interested in money and wealth, who takes advantage of Allworthy’s generosity.
Master Blifil – He is the son of Bridget and Captain Blifil. He wants to get all of Allworthy’s estate.
Mr. Thwackum – He is a tutor brought in to teach Blifil and Tom. He love to disipline with the whip.
Mr. Square – Also responsible for educating Blifil and Tom.
Squire Western – Allworthy’s neighbor. He loves three things, to hunt, the bottle (alcohol), and his daughter.
Sophia Western – She is lovely and intelegent. She is loved by tome and he want to marry her.
Mrs. Western – She is stubborn and pretentious. She is the sister to Squire Western. She has no husband or children so she puts all of her efforts into Sophia.