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Sons and Lovers by D. H. Lawrence
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Sons and Lovers (1913)

by D. H. Lawrence

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7,62782670 (3.59)2 / 277

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English (78)  Dutch (1)  German (1)  Danish (1)  Italian (1)  All languages (82)
Showing 1-5 of 78 (next | show all)
What a wonderful book! Really, really great - written beautifully, with a simple but at the same time complex storyline. The story itself, though spread over so many years, didn't have a lot of action, but in terms of themes & revelations I thought it was incredibly compelling. The ending was very sad, & I liked that it didn't come to the conclusion I thought it would. For the time it was written its surprising how racy it is, & how relevant a lot of it still is. I did feel it was a shame that for all their prominence in the story & in Paul's life, the women involved all seem quite weak both in terms of character development & in terms of themselves when it comes to Paul. Even though one is a suffragette, another quite independent & all fairly strong, they are still rendered second to the main, and at times quite dislikeable, character. ( )
  SadieBabie | Jun 23, 2018 |
A love marriage between Gertrude Coppard of slightly better family than Walter Morel, a coalminer, in Nottinghamshire, produces four children. William, Paul, Annie, and Arthur. The novel is in part a portrait of a marriage and a family wherein one person is ambitious and the other is not. The novel focuses on two of the four children, William and Paul. William, the eldest is smart and handsome, but proves to have a similar weakness as his mother. Her attentions shift to Paul who has artistic ability and temperament and for the first three decades of his life (which are all we get) his affections are divided between his mother and two very different women.

For its time the book was "advanced" even shockingly open about sexual desire. Lawrence's turf is the inner self, the turmoil of emotions, instincts, and impulses that appear to govern much of human behavior. It is only with great effort and thought that a person can break even partially free of being entirely subject to those aspects of the self, free to make his or her own choices about how to live and who to be. With the two women Paul struggles to disentangle his sexual desires from whether he likes and respects them. With his mother he has a different struggle--to be loyal and loving to her without being dominated by her. Clara, his second lover, has herself struggled to define herself through the women's movement and this attracts and repels Paul. His ambivalence toward her, his need to conquer, but his honesty with her that his ideas of what men assume and women endure interested me more than anything else.

The writing--Lawrence's simplified and strange lush rushing repetitive sentences studded with obscure local words is as original as ever and perfectly suits what he is trying to do, pull back the curtain to reveal an underlayer of the human condition , new then with the emerging study of psychology and to announce the start of a titanic shift in the social fabric. **** ( )
  sibyx | Mar 10, 2018 |
The dominant presence of Mrs Morel in the lives of her sons felt incredible real and when ignoring the setting could have been written today. Truly great capture of human relationships. ( )
  brakketh | Dec 29, 2017 |
It took me approximately 500 years to read this book. Partly because it was long, partly because it was slow in places, but mostly because my copy of the book (where did I get it? and why did I bother?) was full of underlines and notes in the margin. Clearly, it was an assigned text, I'm going to guess high school (really? what were they thinking?), and whoever was forced to read this book found it as tedious as I found their notations. I kept telling myself not to read them, but couldn't help it, and they were SO INSIPID that I would have to put the book down in disgust. (Real life example: "hyper-sensitiveness" is underlined -- in the margin it says "sensitivity to an extreme degree.")

Really, I should have ditched this copy and found another, because it's hard for me to differentiate my impatience with the text from my impatience with the notes. But I kept plodding slowly on. And I did find things to admire. Lawrence's sentences and descriptions are skilled and often beautiful. But for all the descriptiveness and detail in just how the relationships between people get so tortured and complicated, I never really felt like I understood or could empathize with any individual character directly. Maybe Mr. Morel I understood the best, which is odd, because he clearly seemed designed to be the least sympathetic.

I don't know. Towards the end I found myself moved by the book, but now, a few weeks later, I feel very meh about it all. ( )
1 vote greeniezona | Dec 6, 2017 |
Loved it. Mrs. Morel is such a lovely, wonderful character. She's realistic in her perception of her children, yet she adores them unfailingly. The sons themselves are all interesting (and infuriating) in their own ways. The book seems to focus predominantly on the relationship between Mrs. Morel and her second son, Paul. Sadly, the only daughter, Anne seems to be very neglected in the novel. ( )
  benuathanasia | Jul 21, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 78 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (29 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Lawrence, D. H.primary authorall editionsconfirmed
Anderson, BarbaraTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Baron, CarlEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Baron, HelenEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Beal, AnthonyIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Blake, VictoriaIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Brotherus, AuneTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Cancogni, FrancaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Daly, MacdonaldEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
de la Plaza, LuisTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
DeMott, BenjaminIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Durov, ValerieEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Dyer, GeoffIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Eyre, Sir RichardIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Fournier-Pargoire, JeanneTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Francioli, PaolaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Gelli, PieroIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Gibson, JamesEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Gilbert, YvonnrCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Gilpin, SamAfterwordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Gopegui, BelénForewordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Halson, GeoffreyEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hilská, KateřinaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ilona, RónaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Jackson, DennisAfterwordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kazin, AlfredIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kliphuis, J.F.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kristensen, TomTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Martínez-Lage, MiguelTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Morrison, BlakeIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Moynahan, JulianEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Nordon, PierreTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Oeser, Hans-ChristianTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Robinson, SheilaIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sagar, KeithIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Slack, PaulNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sterlin, JennyNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Thorne, BobIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Trotter, DavidEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Vance, SimonNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Venning, ChristopherEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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TO EDWARD GARNETT
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"The Bottoms" succeeded to "Hell Row."
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0375753737, Paperback)

Sons and Lovers was the first modern portrayal of a phenomenon that later, thanks to Freud, became easily recognizable as the Oedipus complex. Never was a son more indentured to his mother's love and full of hatred for his father than Paul Morel, D.H. Lawrence's young protagonist. Never, that is, except perhaps Lawrence himself. In his 1913 novel he grappled with the discordant loves that haunted him all his life--for his spiritual childhood sweetheart, here called Miriam, and for his mother, whom he transformed into Mrs. Morel. It is, by Lawrence's own account, a book aimed at depicting this woman's grasp: "as her sons grow up she selects them as lovers--first the eldest, then the second. These sons are urged into life by their reciprocal love of their mother--urged on and on. But when they come to manhood, they can't love, because their mother is the strongest power in their lives."

Of course, Mrs. Morel takes neither of her two elder sons (the first of whom dies early, which further intensifies her grip on Paul) as a literal lover, but nonetheless her psychological snare is immense. She loathes Paul's Miriam from the start, understanding that the girl's deep love of her son will oust her: "She's not like an ordinary woman, who can leave me my share in him. She wants to absorb him." Meanwhile, Paul plays his part with equal fervor, incapable of committing himself in either direction: "Why did his mother sit at home and suffer?... And why did he hate Miriam, and feel so cruel towards her, at the thought of his mother. If Miriam caused his mother suffering, then he hated her--and he easily hated her." Soon thereafter he even confesses to his mother: "I really don't love her. I talk to her, but I want to come home to you."

The result of all this is that Paul throws Miriam over for a married suffragette, Clara Dawes, who fulfills the sexual component of his ascent to manhood but leaves him, as ever, without a complete relationship to challenge his love for his mother. As Paul voyages from the working-class mining world to the spheres of commerce and art (he has fair success as a painter), he accepts that his own achievements must be equally his mother's. "There was so much to come out of him. Life for her was rich with promise. She was to see herself fulfilled... All his work was hers."

The cycles of Paul's relationships with these three women are terrifying at times, and Lawrence does nothing to dim their intensity. Nor does he shirk in his vivid, sensuous descriptions of the landscape that offers up its blossoms and beasts and "shimmeriness" to Paul's sensitive spirit. Sons and Lovers lays fully bare the souls of men and earth. Few books tell such whole, complicated truths about the permutations of love as resolutely without resolution. It's nothing short of searing to be brushed by humanity in this manner. --Melanie Rehak

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:18:53 -0400)

(see all 8 descriptions)

"Sons and Lovers is one of the landmark novels of the twentieth century. When it appeared in 1913, it was immediately recognized as the first great modern restatement of the oedipal drama, and it is now widely considered the major work of D.H. Lawrence's early period. This intensely autobiographical novel recounts the story of Paul Morel, a young artist growing to manhood in a British working-class family rife with conflict. The author's vivid evocation of the all-consuming nature of possessive love and sexual attraction makes this one of his most powerful novels."--Jacket.… (more)

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Penguin Australia

2 editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 0141441445, 0141199857

Urban Romantics

An edition of this book was published by Urban Romantics.

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