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The Horse Dealers Daughter by D.H. Lawrence - Research Paper Example

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In “The Horse Dealers Daughter”, D.H. Lawrence depicts the struggles of a woman who tries to cope with the collapse of her family and her strained relationship between her and her brothers…
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The Horse Dealers Daughter by D.H. Lawrence
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Download file to see previous pages Having so much of love to give and yet having no one to give it to, she looks for a way out. Through the use of characters, symbolism, language, style and description, D.H. Lawrence presents his theme of romantic love as an irrational force that is psychologically redeeming through the emotional development of the two main characters Mabel Pervin and Dr. Jack Ferguson. In their book, A Companion to the British and Irish short story, Cheryl Alexander Malcolm and David Malcolm maintain that the story’s opening “establishes the principal concern of the story: the emotional, physical and financial well-being of Mabel, whose place in society and sense of self has been deeply wounded by the family’s downfall”. She has nobody to love and care for except her dead parents - her mother who passed away when she was just 14 and her father who recently died. “And she lived in the memory of her mother, who had died when she was just fourteen, and for whom she had loved. She had loved her father, too, ……. feeling secure in him, ….. and now he had died and left them all hopelessly in debt” (Lawrence). When they could not afford a housekeeper, Mabel took on the household chores “keeping the home together in penury for her ineffectual brothers.” She did not mind it for “so long as there was money, the girl felt herself established, and brutally proud, reserved” (Lawrence). She did it for Sebastian 2 the love of her family. When her parents died, she has nobody to love to love her in return. Her brothers do not want her love. In fact, she never shared any feelings of love with her father or her brothers. She is angry with her father for marrying. In fact, her father and brothers “talked at her and round her for so many years that she hardly heard them at all” (Lawrence). She is often referred to by degrading terms such as “the sulkiest bitch that ever trod”, her brothers also teased her about being a maid or about her “bulldog” face. Mable is also pictured as sitting “immutable” and like “one condemned” when her brothers talk to her. Mabel’s brothers, Joe, Fred and Malcolm do not see to the welfare of their sister. After the death of their father, they decide to go their own way. Joe, the eldest, is set to marry a woman whose father would provide him with a job and therefore is not worried. Fred pretends to be concerned about his sister but this is a facade to avoid facing his own uncertain future. He has no control over his own destiny and often lashes out at Mabel’s unwillingness to decide what she wants to do. Malcolm, the youngest, seems more concerned but only offers his sister suggestions on what she should do. Thus, while Mabel’s brothers have more or less decided on their future plans, Mable is unsure of what the future holds for her. They have more economically viable options than Mable. As a woman, she does not have the same social mobility or economic opportunities as her brothers have. Her brothers decide to go in their own separate ways but Mabel has no place to go to. She has only a few options left open to her – she could go and live with her sister or become a servant. At the beginning of the story, her brother asks her, “Well, Mabel, what are you going to do with yourself?” She is forced by her brothers to find a new place. She tells her brothers that she is not quite sure where she is going only to be ticked off by her brothers that if she does not make a Sebastian 3 decision, then she would end up living in the streets “find yourself lodgings on the kerbstone”. Instead of encouraging and motivating her, they tease her and seem to make fun of her sense of hopelessness and loneliness. As ...Download file to see next pages Read More
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