Sons and Lovers

Length: 5 Pages 1287 Words

Throughout one’s lifetime many relationships are established between people that result in either a negative or positive influence on a person, shaping how they form new relationships with others. Throughout D.H. Lawrence’s classic novel Son’s and Lovers, the character of Paul Morel is developed through his relationships with three women, Gertrude, his mother, and his two loves Miriam and Clara. These women each play a distinct role in the construction of Paul, as his connection with his mother is Oedipal, while his relationships with Clara and Miriam are sexual and spiritual. Gertrude is the most powerful woman in Paul’s life, and thus this tight-knit relationship serves as the root for Paul’s future affairs. It is no coincidence that Gertrude shares the same name as Hamlet’s Queen Gertrude, for both women share the mother’s possessive role of the Oedipal complex. Paul sees his mother as youthful and virginal, frequently comparing her to flowers. At times Paul and Gertrude’s closeness is almost like that of a couple, for example while the mother and son dine in town together, Paul thinks of her as "gay as a sweetheart", and feels the "excitement of lovers". However, Gertrude’s youthfulness was not eter Continue...

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"He was h! urt between the past glamour with Miriam and the knowledge that his mother fretted.... Thus, as his sexual desire is aroused in his maturity, Paul seeks fulfillment from a lover that can be identified with is mother. Spilka writes, "...each of Paul's three loves in actually significant in itself, since each contributes something vital to his development, yet finally proves destructive and inadequate". '" Interestingly, upon Gertrude's death he completely removes himself from both lovers. In addition, she also must be associated with sex. The failure of Paul and Clara's relationship can also be attributed to Gertrude, however, as the death of his sexuality coincides with Gertrude's death. Being in her thirties while Paul is still in his early twenties, Clara is experienced in the art of love making and is able give Paul the "impersonal love he needs", as put by Spilka. Reminded of his mother's youth and virginity in her passing, Paul feels closest to her in age than ever before at the moment of her death: "She lay like a maiden asleep...She was young again". Weiss suggests that, in this aspect of the Oedipal complex, that Paul's "real desire is to be even more than the 'oldest son,' is not even that his mother remain young, but that they equal in age no matter what it is". However it can be argued that Gertrude is, indeed, the cause of the breakup, for the idea of replacement worries Paul as much as it does his mother. As a youth, Paul would clean Gertrude's boots "with as much reverence as if they had been flowers" to "make thee fit for respectable folk", and as a man he cleans Clara's shortly after they make love. he could not harden his heart to ignore his mother. In his essay, "Counterfeit Loves", Mark Spilka explains: If Miriam should win Paul's soul, there would be nothing left for Mrs. Often represented by flowers, Miriam resembles Gertrude in purity, intellect, and protective nature. Paul urges a reunion between Clara and Baxter Dawes, and when Miriam proposes to him, he rejects her, saying, "But you love me so much, you want to put me in your pocket.


were fixed upon his mother, an almost crippling attachment which is disclosed in Lawrence's best novel, the autobiographical Sons and Lovers" (Untermeyer 461). (3788 15 )

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were fixed upon his mother, an almost crippling attachment which is disclosed in Lawrence's best novel, the autobiographical Sons and Lovers" (Untermeyer 461). (2420 10 )

Lawrence and his mother had a very complex relationship, as anyone who has read the autobiographical Sons and Lovers knows. This (1396 6 )

DH Lawrence's Psychoanalytic Ideas
After the success of Sons and Lovers (1913) Lawrence had won numerous admirers and was encouraged as he approached the composition of his next book. (7087 28 )

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Lawrence "made a dead set at the Oedipal relationship he experienced with his parents" in Sons and Lovers and even transferred people to his fictional world (10166 41 )

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since what needs to be overcome here is the reluctance of the lovers themselves to younger one good, and from one in which a knight has three sons, the oldest (1668 7 )