Jude the Obscure

Read by LibriVox Volunteers

(4 stars; 57 reviews)

Jude the Obscure is the last of Thomas Hardy's novels, begun as a magazine serial and first published in book form in 1895. Its hero Jude Fawley is a lower-class young man who dreams of becoming a scholar. The two other main characters are his earthy wife, Arabella, and his intellectual cousin, Sue. Themes include class, scholarship, religion, marriage, and the modernization of thought and society. (from Wikipedia) (14 hr 53 min)


1-01 Part First - Chapter 1 8:53 Read by Aaron Decker
1-02 Part First - Chapter 2 16:18 Read by Aaron Decker
1-03 Part First - Chapter 3 18:11 Read by David Barnes
1-04 Part First - Chapter 4 12:50 Read by David Barnes
1-05 Part First - Chapter 5 10:33 Read by Kathy
1-06 Part First - Chapter 6 16:19 Read by Kathy
1-07 Part First - Chapter 7 18:06 Read by Kathy
1-08 Part First - Chapter 8 13:07 Read by Robin Cotter
1-09 Part First - Chapter 9 15:53 Read by Robin Cotter
1-10 Part First - Chapter 10 12:19 Read by Moira Fogarty
1-11 Part First - Chapter 11 14:36 Read by Moira Fogarty
2-01 Part Second - Chapter 1 17:23 Read by hefyd
2-02 Part Second - Chapter 2 19:33 Read by hefyd
2-03 Part Second - Chapter 3 14:23 Read by hefyd
2-04 Part Second - Chapter 4 16:43 Read by J. M. Smallheer
2-05 Part Second - Chapter 5 11:06 Read by J. M. Smallheer
2-06 Part Second - Chapter 6 22:08 Read by Brother Patrick
2-07 Part Second - Chapter 7 16:33 Read by Brother Patrick
3-01 Part Third - Chapter 1 16:41 Read by George Pilling
3-02 Part Third - Chapter 2 7:33 Read by George Pilling
3-03 Part Third - Chapter 3 12:26 Read by George Pilling
3-04 Part Third - Chapter 4 17:20 Read by George Pilling
3-05 Part Third - Chapter 5 10:20 Read by George Pilling
3-06 Part Third - Chapter 6 20:22 Read by George Pilling
3-07 Part Third - Chapter 7 14:18 Read by George Pilling
3-08 Part Third - Chapter 8 16:55 Read by George Pilling
3-09 Part Third - Chapter 9 17:44 Read by George Pilling
3-10 Part Third - Chapter 10 9:24 Read by George Pilling
4-01 Part Fourth - Chapter 1 18:52 Read by thomahal
4-02 Part Fourth - Chapter 2 20:24 Read by thomahal
4-03 Part Fourth - Chapter 3 22:08 Read by thomahal
4-04 Part Fourth - Chapter 4 23:25 Read by thomahal
4-05 Part Fourth - Chapter 5 18:48 Read by J. M. Smallheer
4-06 Part Fourth - Chapter 6 16:32 Read by J. M. Smallheer
5-01 Part Fifth - Chapter 1 12:29 Read by Debra Lynn
5-02 Part Fifth - Chapter 2 22:27 Read by Debra Lynn
5-03 Part Fifth - Chapter 3 21:41 Read by Debra Lynn
5-04 Part Fifth - Chapter 4 21:03 Read by Debra Lynn
5-05 Part Fifth - Chapter 5 22:45 Read by Debra Lynn
5-06 Part Fifth - Chapter 6 25:42 Read by Debra Lynn
5-07 Part Fifth - Chapter 7 12:15 Read by Debra Lynn
5-08 Part Fifth - Chapter 8 15:40 Read by Debra Lynn
6-01 Part Sixth - Chapter 1 22:56 Read by Aaron Decker
6-02 Part Sixth - Chapter 2 21:05 Read by Tora
6-03 Part Sixth - Chapter 3 35:03 Read by Lucy Burgoyne (1950 - 2014)
6-04 Part Sixth - Chapter 4 19:35 Read by Lucy Burgoyne (1950 - 2014)
6-05 Part Sixth - Chapter 5 16:21 Read by Lee Ann Howlett
6-06 Part Sixth - Chapter 6 15:37 Read by Robin Cotter
6-07 Part Sixth - Chapter 7 16:31 Read by Robin Cotter
6-08 Part Sixth - Chapter 8 16:21 Read by Robin Cotter
6-09 Part Sixth - Chapter 9 14:35 Read by hefyd
6-10 Part Sixth - Chapter 10 7:45 Read by hefyd
6-11 Part Sixth - Chapter 11 15:32 Read by hefyd


Mixed feelings

(3 stars)

Doubtless, one of the greatest English novels of the 19th century. I'd give it a 5… but unfortunately some chapters are in a poor sound quality & some are read with truly atrocious accents, making it difficult to understand for anyone not born in the place the reader comes from. I don't mean to be chauvinistic, and I understand not the entire world speaks the same English tongue, but Librivox should request some minimal standard of sound quality and articulation.

Thomas Hardy is one of the greatest novelists and poets

(5 stars)

Far from the Madding Crowd, Tess of the Tess of the d'Urbervilles and Jude the Obscure are my favorites by Hardy. Far from the Madding Crowd is the one that comes closest to a happy ending. Along with "naturalism" or realism, and a grimness(well at least in Jude) sympathy also stand out in Hardy's novels Jude is one who suffers from what we may be label today as morbid scrupulosity or ocd or whatever....maybe i am totally off. It seems to about, in part, one of those of us, who take one step forward and get knocked 10 steps backwards And what is reflexive in so many, perhaps the majority of homo sapiens, is to exploit those with that chronic, over active conscience, that morbid constant doubt which leaves some of us so exhausted and vulnerable. The majority of "persons", so it seems, go as so far as to play on that doubt and say we are bad, even though we are more ethical than that "other directed" string pulling majority of cookie cutter "well adjusted". One thing to say, imho, Jude is one of those "poor" fellows or females who are perpetually getting "screwed" over by others and circumstances that we become wretched or even to the point of becoming "wicked" and worse yet taking the unhappy road of life out of morbid self abnigation for "morality's" sake...sigh poor Jude and many of us...have not finished book yet. Painful read if you are depressed. It does not have its periods of bliss as in lets say the tragic Tess of the D'urbivilles. of course i did not finish that either, so i don't know but i am told it ends tragically for the good and thus too easily exploited Tess. At the risk of being politically incorrect, Sue is a flibbertigibbet and needs help but certainly not in todays way of mad doctoring with tortorous drugs that while internal and hidden are worse than the psychiatric treatments in the book of its era. As always there is much useful criticism of society's petty and trivial and strictured norms that may not apply to Hardy's epoch's "problems of living" but are still more or less applicable to the oppressions and unnatural problems we as a society and individuals contend with in the 21st century. Unlike Hardy's other novels, there are far too many fits and starts and contradictions in this one. but there are moments of humour too. the story of the workers who restored the ten commandments. they got drunk and left all the "nots" out of the thou shall not do this that and the other thing. by the way Arabella, the professors at christminister, the narrow minded town folk, and that quack doctor are fu#king as#holes and damn societal norms and sumptuary laws... Jude and his cousin/wife Sue are the most sympathetic characters and most humane in this novel. Arabella is one of shallowest characters I have ever come across. a soul about the depth of bubble gum rapper. However, in fiction and in reality our personalities are much a product of upbringing and circumstances. And how we have been nurtured is often a lack of material necessities. that is classical conditioning and it is harder to reverse or change our personalities than most organic diseases. sympathy,love, vital material essentials(like food, shelter, clothing, medical care et al) and education are the fundamentals of a good personality. its not genetics, its nurture.

Jude the Obscure

(4 stars)

If you are at familiar with this author you will pretty surely have a good idea of the ending. That doesn't make it less enjoyable if you like his work. This story certainly makes one feel the author was frustrated with nearly everything about society at the time. Personally I found both women in Jude's life quite disagreeable. I would have given it five stars but having so many different readers was quite distracting. for me there was one lady in particular that as a reading style I find very hard to follow. I have heard her in other books also and it is without doubt her style of reading and not just particular to this book. but I am so happy that people volunteer I cannot get too distressed when it is not perfection!

Confused of Wessex!

(3 stars)

Almost biblical language written in treacle not ink, tells the tale of complex love affairs while Jude, the protagonist, puzzles on issues of social mobility via education. He appears to be torn between the physical and the intellectual sides of a wife, and bounces back and forth as he makes up his mind!

(3.5 stars)

Brilliant writing and I got used to the many different voices but oh what a pain to have to press play between almost every chapter. Why can't it be that each chapter follows on from the last rather than having to stop so the reader or the listener has to press play

brilliant Hardy

(4 stars)

Briliant Hardy ! This Hardy at his usual brilliant self. The story was absorbing. Spoilt a little bit by so many different accents and pronunciations of english surnames and places. One ladies accent was quite odd!