Women in Love

  • Anne Wright
Part of the Macmillan Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature book series (STCL)


To say that Women in Love is a fiction of the Great War is not, after all, so extraordinary. Lawrence saw the book that way, at least by 1920:

it is a novel which took its final shape in the midst of the period of war, though it does not concern the war itself. I should wish the time to remain unfixed, so that the bitterness of the war may be taken for granted in the characters.1

As this suggests, the book has its roots in the pre-war period: it formed part of the mass of material which was split and reformed to produce the two novels The Rainbow and Women in Love. The major rewriting was done in the spring and summer of 1916; in the latter months of 1916 Lawrence again rewrote the novel and worked on the typescript, which was more or less complete by the end of 1917.2 Like Heartbreak House, then, Women in Love is a product of the middle years of the war.


Violent Death Binary Opposition Country House Holy Ghost Sunday Evening 
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  1. 2.
    For details of stages of composition, see K. Sagar, D. H. Lawrence: A Calendar of His Works (Manchester, 1979).Google Scholar
  2. 16.
    H. M. Tomlinson, ‘A Raid Night’, in Waiting for Daylight (1922) p. 16.Google Scholar
  3. 18.
    W. B. Yeats, ‘The Second Coming’, Collected Poems (1933; 2nd edn 1950 ) p. 211.Google Scholar
  4. 21.
    P. Fussell, The Great War and Modern Memory (1975) p. 301.Google Scholar
  5. 23.
    J. Goode, ‘D. H. Lawrence’, in The Twentieth Century, ed. B. Bergonzi, Sphere History of Literature in the English Language (1970) vol. VII, p. 133.Google Scholar
  6. 24.
    For an account of the ‘naturism’ of Lawrence, see J. Alcorn, The Nature Novel from Hardy to Lawrence (1977).Google Scholar
  7. 27.
    See A. Kettle, An Introduction to the English Novel (1967) vol. II, p. 100.Google Scholar
  8. 29.
    J. Kott, Shükespeare Our Contemporary (1965) p. 68.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Anne Wright 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anne Wright
    • 1
  1. 1.The Hatfield PolytechnicUK

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