Women in Love

Women in Love

Women in Love

Women in Love


In Women in Love (1920), Ursula and Gudrun Brangwen who first appeared in Lawrence's earlier novel, The Rainbow, take center stage as Lawrence explores their growth and development in their relationships with two powerful men, Rupert Birkin and his friend Gerald Crich. A novel of regeneration and dark, destructive human passion, Women in Love reflects the impact on Lawrence of the First World War in the potential both for annihilation and salvation of the self. A full introduction and detailed notes offer an illuminating discourse on one of Lawrence's most extraordinary, innovative, and unsettling works.


Ursula and Gudrun Brangwen sat one morning in the window- bay of their father's house in Beldover, working and talking. Ursula was stitching a piece of brightly coloured embroidery, and Gudrun was drawing upon a board which she held on her knee. They were mostly silent, talking as their thoughts strayed through their minds.

'Ursula,' said Gudrun, 'don't you really want to get married?' Ursula laid her embroidery in her lap and looked up. Her face was calm and considerate.

'I don't know,' she replied. 'It depends how you mean.'

Gudrun was slightly taken aback. She watched her sister for some moments.

'Well,' she said, ironically, 'it usually means one thing!--But don't you think anyhow, you'd be'--she darkened slightly--'in a better position than you are in now?'

A shadow came over Ursula's face.

'I might,' she said. 'But I'm not sure.'

Again Gudrun paused, slightly irritated. She wanted to be quite definite.

'You don't think one needs the experience of having been married?' she asked.

'Do you think it need be an experience?' replied Ursula.

'Bound to be, in some way or other,' said Gudrun, coolly. 'Possibly undesirable, but bound to be an experience of some sort.'

'Not really,' said Ursula. 'More likely to be the end of experience.'

Gudrun sat very still, to attend to this.

'Of course,' she said, 'there's that to consider.' This brought the conversation to a close. Gudrun, almost angrily, took up her rubber and began to rub out part of her drawing. Ursula stitched absorbedly.

'You wouldn't consider a good offer?' asked Gudrun.

'I think I've rejected several,' said Ursula.

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