Ultimately, I blame Tony for he made some poor choices throughout his life.
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Tony Last was responsible for his own downfall, but we also have to blame the demise a the culture he embraced. Victorian values and beliefs dictated his life. He was an aristocrat, and a rather dull one at that, but Victorian England was quickly coming to a close, something that only enhanced his stuffiness and what others believed to be outdated and boring qualities.
His wife sees him as the only remnant of a dead society; she is bored and unhappy in their marriage. Tony, on the other hand, continues to cling to tradition, unwilling to conform to the new ideals of society. He is completely out of place in what has become a new society and culture, and those feelings of isolation and abandonment lead him to seek refuge at his family home Hetton. Tony's downfall is a direct result of his obsession to preserve Hetton at all costs, which in turn is a direct result of his loyalty to the home, the name, and the refusal to transition himself out of the old and into the new.
A Handful of Dust