A Handful Of Dust By Evelyn Waugh Essay

2250 Words 9 Pages
A Handful of Dust, written by Evelyn Waugh, centers on the life of Anthony Last. Specifically, on his relationships with others and how those affiliations affect him, both positively and negatively. The novel focuses on themes such as adultery and its effect on others, wealth and its effect on society and class, and morality and its effect on humans. Published in 1934, it quickly establishes itself as a satire, having comedic, tragic, and bitter tones that create the appropriate atmosphere. The story begins with the strained marriage between Anthony “Tony” and Brenda Last, who eventually dissolve their relations following the death of their son and Brenda’s amorous liaison with John Beaver. Having his life shattered, Tony takes a trip to Brazil, only to end up captured by an illiterate man and presumed dead in the final chapter, with Brenda regaining her social status after marrying a family friend. The book also deals with growing modernity of the world due to the changing values and ideas of society. Its themes and characters share a great deal of similarity with those presented in The Good Soldier. Preceding A Handful of Dust by over two decades, The Good Soldier concentrates on John Dowell, who learns of his wife’s affairs following her suicide. Dowell’s relationship with a high-society couple known as the Ashburnhams leads to his life completely transformed due to a series of events within nine years. The book explores adultery, religion, society and class, and…

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