River of Dissolution D. H. Lawrence and English Romanticism
First published in 1969. This title concerns itself with the ambivalence of Lawrence’s attitude towards corruption. Clarke demonstrates that Lawrence’s attitude to ‘will’ and to sensational or disintegrative sex is much more equivocal than conceded. At the same time this is a study of Lawrence’s debt as a novelist to the English Romantic poets. A tradition of metaphor is traced from the second half of the eighteenth century, through the poetry of the major Romantics to the Decadents, and so to Lawrence, whose attitudes to mechanism and corruption are shown to be articulated, above all, through ambivalent images of dissolution and disintegration. This title will be of interest to students of literature.
Introduction; Part 1: ‘Dissolve, and quite forget’: A Tradition of Metaphor; 1. Self-Destroying 2. Images of dissolution in Burke’s Enquiry 3. Abstraction and decay 4. Living disintegration 5. Intensification-in-reduction 6. ‘Dissolves, diffuses, dissipates’ 7. Flux and irony 8. The downward rhythm; Part 2: The Activity of Departure; 9. Reductive energy in The Rainbow 10. Women in Love: The rhetoric of corruption 11. Women in Love: Individuality and Belonging 12. Savage Visionaries 13. Mechanical and Paradisal: The Plumed Serpent and Lady Chatterley’s Lover; Conclusion; Notes; Index