By Fiona Becket (auth.)
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Extra info for D. H. Lawrence The Thinker as Poet
Published posthumously, it is an unpolished set of chapters in draft form, and not a finalized text, but it succeeds in communicating many of Lawrence's major preoccupations, building on the Foreword to Sons and Lovers. Like all the early essays it represents Lawrence's tendency to begin his thought processes by recourse to the kinds of dualistic structures which his later writing, certainly his fiction, subtilizes. 'Study of Thomas Hardy' builds on the The Birth of the Self 21 attempt in the Foreword to Sons and Lovers to describe personal and 'human' experience in impersonal and non-human terms (human relationships, and the birth of the self, articulated through the poetic language of Word/Flesh, Man/Woman, and in 'Study of Thomas Hardy', Love/Law).
A man' gives himself up to 'losing himself' by daring 'to venture within the unknown of the female' like 'a man who enters a primeval, virgin forest' (Hardy, p. 104). 'The female' in this description is an abstraction: the sense of fear, fear of female sexuality, is strong. The man in this adventure returns 'rich with addition to his soul', oxymoronically 'rich with the knowledge ... of the unknown' (p. 104). As the description develops 'unknown' must resonate ontologically: 'all the magnificence that is, and yet which is unknown to any of us' (p.
The 'subtle interplay' described between the child and parents develops the child, as the writer is developed between the roots of the firs in the dark forest. Child and tree are also both pre- or non-verbal. Lawrence continually reminds us that the trees are faceless, headless, mindless: they lack the all-too-human sense organs, and just as Lawrence concentrates on the solar plexus in the human being, in the tree his principal focus is on the trunk. Communication, but wordless communication, underpins the descriptions of reciprocality throughout Fantasia of the Unconscious.
D. H. Lawrence The Thinker as Poet by Fiona Becket (auth.)