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Selected Essays Paperback – 29 Jan 1970


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Product details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd; New edition (29 Jan. 1970)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0140007539
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140007534
  • Product Dimensions: 2.5 x 2.5 x 2.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,223,245 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By RichardS on 17 Jun. 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have been trying to replace my old battered copy of Selected Essays for years since it went 'out of print'. Although not new this second hand copy was is excellent condition for its age. Thankyou for the service.
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By gille liath TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 29 April 2013
DH Lawrence is a difficult writer to weigh up. If he had wished, he could have been the greatest of Britain's C20th realist writers; or an English JM Synge; or conceivably an English Burns; or all three.

But he didn't wish. It wasn't enough for him to be an accomplished writer, he wanted to stand the world on its head. As a result his novels - apart from Sons and Lovers - are unsatisfactory, trying to see through the surface of life to the essential events of the soul, but not quite succeeding. And yet, you can't read them without realising that somehow, as few other writers, he matters.

Reading these essays, you find that he matters because things matter - everything matters - to him. It's probably as convenient a compendium of his thought as you could have, in a focused and approachable form. It includes pieces on relations between men and women, landscapes, traveller's tales, political systems, literature and art. Each one, dense with ideas, would justify its own review - but everything always comes back to his own philosophy, metaphysics, theology - or 'the venture into consciousness' as he calls it.

Lawrence repeatedly shows descriptive powers and a sense of humour which aren't always obvious in the novels; but his notions continually get mixed up with existential metaphors and sheer psychological projection. I suppose that's true of everyone to a degree; but Lawrence takes it further than most. Only he could make shooting a porcupine which was causing a nuisance on his New Mexico ranch the occasion, not only to reflect that we cannot live without suppressing other forms of life, but to smuggle in a value judgement about that fact: namely that any creature which suppresses others proves its moral superiority by that very fact. Might is right.
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