Henry Fielding Writing Styles in Tom Jones

This Study Guide consists of approximately 58 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Tom Jones.
This section contains 376 words
(approx. 1 page at 400 words per page)
Buy the Tom Jones Study Guide

Epic, Picaresque, and Epistolary

Fielding melds elements of several traditional literary forms in Tom Jones. First, the novel borrows some elements of epic poems, such as Homer's Odyssey. In fact, in the novel itself, Fielding, as narrator, calls the book a "prosaicomiepic," meaning a comic epic written in prose.

An epic has a strong protagonist who does heroic deeds and has a broad scope of action; that is, the events take place over a wide range of time and place. Tom Jones fulfills all these requirements of an epic.

Second, Tom Jones incorporates elements of the picaresque novel, which originated in Spain. A picaresque features a roguish hero (picaro in Spanish) and is episodic and more loosely structured than an epic. A picaresque is literally "one thing after another," and the only unifying thread may be that all events befall the central character. Many picaresques center on a journey...

(read more)

This section contains 376 words
(approx. 1 page at 400 words per page)
Buy the Tom Jones Study Guide
Copyrights
Novels for Students
Tom Jones from Novels for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
Follow Us on Facebook