The Lovely Lady

The Lovely Lady

The Lovely Lady

The Lovely Lady

Excerpt

Lawrence was concerned with the inhuman element in human relationships, the bare physiological element. “1 only care what woman is,” he said, “what she is—inhumanly, physiologically, materially.” He saw through the mask we put on for the world, through the private distortion we see in our own mirror, to the stripped, basic reactions themselves. This collection, which includes his last short stories, indicates the themes which are enlarged on in his novels. Each is a sketch, a diagram, an analysis of essential, unselfconscious behavior. And each analyzes the disintegration of human relationships through lack of orientation to any true and passionate mode of life— the decadence of our industrial civilization and social system.

Mother and Daughter treats of “Momism,” the stranglehold mothers have on their children of which Lawrence was in his own life so desperately aware. The Blue Mocassins and The Overtone concern failures in marriage. And The Rocking-Horse Winner is an uncanny study of a sensitive child in a family ridden by debts and a passion for luxury.

The stories are strange, written at a different level, pre occupied with other things than those with which most short-story writers deal. They are fraught with symbol, with significance, and with truth—not always pleasant truth. Some of us may recognize our own portraits in Lawrence’s gallery. As Vernon Lee said, Lawrence “sees more than a human being ought to see. Perhaps that’s why he hated humanity so much.”

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