This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

The Rocking Horse Winner, By D. H. Lawrence

1184 words - 5 pages

In one of his last short stories, “The Rocking-Horse Winner”, D. H. Lawrence tells a story about the life of a young boy, Paul, who has the ability to name the winner of any horse race by simply riding on his toy rocking horse. The short story is vaguely familiar to that of a Fairy Tale. Lawrence's simple style, coupled with the supernatural suggests as much. However, this fable is not an average fairy tale. The text utilizes two reoccurring motifs: the eyes and hardness of the heart, to indicate a symbolic connection between Paul and his mother. The elements of irony and the ill-fated characters produces a deeply sardonic fairy tale on .
Her lifestyle is what can be described as genteel poverty. She is a woman who is said to have “started with all the advantages” (750), but she threw away all of her prospects when she married her husband. However, she is unable to let that lifestyle go and their family is left with a constant shortage of money. Only after Paul wins money for her is she able to have “the luxury [she] had been used to” (Lawrence, 757). His mother is said to have married for love, but in the time since then it has “turned to dust”. She also has three children, but she does not love them either. She knows that her heart has a “hard little place that could not feel love...” (Lawrence, 750). In order to cover up this flaw she pretends as though she loves her children so the other parents within her social circle believe that she is a great mother. This artificial love manifests itself in the form of expensive gifts, servants, and a nurse (or nanny). However, in the privacy of their own home she is cold and distant from her children, and they know of her stone heart. Despite being briefly mentioned, the knowledge of the hardness in her heart creates a bias in the reader who is made to believe that she cannot love, and that she defines her existence through a materialistic lifestyle, which is key to the overarching irony of the work.
The eyes act as the window to the soul, particularly when it concerns the character of Paul. With Paul, the eyes are representation of his driving passion. The narrator always refers to his “blue eyes” as being either “big”, “hot” or “flaring”, “uncanny”, or finally as “stones”. These can be located throughout the text correlating with key turning points in the tale.
At first, before he has his conversation about luck with his mother, Paul's eyes aren't mentioned, but that does not change the fact that they are still blue. This suggests a purity of his being, or soul, if you will; untainted by the knowledge of true human nature. It is only after his conversation with his mother, after he tells her that he is a lucky person, that there is a change in his eyes. In his first ride of the rocking-horse his eyes have a “strange glare”, his sisters recognize the change and avoid him. When his uncle and mother arrive and try to talk with him, he gives them a “blue glare”, and when he finishes his blue eyes...

Find Another Essay On The Rocking-Horse Winner, by D. H. Lawrence

"The Rocking Horse Winner" by D.H,Lawrence

585 words - 2 pages Summary: An analysis on D.H. Lawrence's "Rocking Horse Winner." Specifically, discusses how through the characterization, symbolism, and language of the short story, Lawrence successfully creates a materialistic image.________________________________________I. Written in 1933, D.H. Lawrence's short story "The Rocking Horse Winner" illustrates the consumptive nature of materialism. Through the use of characterization and symbolism, the author

"The Rocking Horse Winner" Essay

652 words - 3 pages "The Rocking Horse Winner"Paul's mother in "The Rocking Horse Winner" is a cold, unloving parent who is extravagant and materialistic."The Rocking Horse Winner" is a short story written in the 20th century by D.H. Lawrence. One of its outstanding elements is the vivid characterization of Paul and his mother. Paul's mother in "The Rocking Horse Winner" is a cold, unloving parent who is extravagant and materialistic.The cold and unloving quality

The rocking horse winner

743 words - 3 pages . Lawrence is known for his interest in materialism and modern society. These themes have been found in the “The Rocking Horse Winner”, which described a young boy by the name of Paul who has no luck. Paul would ride his lucky horse to find the winner of the horse’s name. Paul and his uncle would gamble on the lucky horse to get money so he can support the mother’s money hunger needs, which she needed desperately. He uses symbols, such as the

The Rocking Horse Winner

10845 words - 43 pages foreknowledge. A Cruel Twist Paul, sadly, becomes very ill. Movingly, his mother finally shows some tenderness towards him before he dies. Though the boy's mother ends up with a fortune, she loses her son just as she feels love for him. Sixth point of view: In the short story "The Rocking Horse-Winner" by D. H. Lawrence it is illustrated that money cannot buy happiness. The short story displays the way people allow money to control their lives. The passage

The Rocking-Horse Winner

1190 words - 5 pages D. H. Lawrence’s fable of materialism, affluence and a broken mother/son bond echoes greedy transgression. His writings are well-known for delving into human nature and he does an excellent job demonstrating the trait of materialism, morally questioning the value of love versus the hazard of greed. This upper-class family is shattered by avarice; their eventual downfall comes, despite the overwhelming effort of keeping up appearances. The

The Rocking-horse Winner

974 words - 4 pages In the short story ?The Rocking Horse Winner,? D.H.Lawrence uses his characters as symbols in support of the theme, that innocence cannot survive when confronted with greed and selfishness. This theme is prominent twice in the story. First the theme is shown through the corruption of Paul, leading him to push himself to extremes which ultimately lead to the second, and more horrifying example, his death. According to one critic, this story

The Rocking Horse Winner

5501 words - 22 pages the mother, who had a great belief in herself, did not succeed any better, and her tastes were just as expensive. And so the house came to be haunted by the unspoken phrase: There must be more money! There must be more money! The children could hear it all the time, though nobody said it aloud. They heard it at Christmas, when the expensive and splendid toys filled the nursery. Behind the shining modern rocking-horse, behind the smart doll's

The Rocking Horse Winner

883 words - 4 pages The Rocking Horse Winner When a person is lucky, it does not have to mean that they are fortunate with money. Luck is the chance for things to go the way you want them to go with out having any control over the situation. In The Rocking Horse Winner, Hester, the mother seems to believe that luck is strictly having money, and when there is no money, there is no luck. Hester's idea of luck meaning money brings forth the two ideas of greed

The Rocking-Horse Winner

1292 words - 5 pages THE ROCKING-HORSE WINNER Every human being desires to rise in life or society; it's how we get there that determine our consequences, Greed has no boundaries with social inequality, however the innocent pay the maximum price. Once goals are accomplished, who's to say if the craving is satisfied? People are never happy with what they have, it's human nature. The more one gets the more one wants.Greed is powerful, and easy to submit to. In this

The rocking horse winner

891 words - 4 pages anything and everything by just batting my eyes and saying daddy please. Now to what ways do are parents hurt us without knowing it. In this short story The Rocking horse winner this little boy rides a horse to find out who wins the horse race so that he can be lucky so his mother will love him. First of all the things that they say sometimes truly do hurt your feelings like” why can’t you be more like your brother?” or maybe “You can’t do anything

The Rocking-Horse Winner by D.H. Lawrence- Is Hester really Evil?

1147 words - 5 pages Only Hester Is MotherWhen one first reads "The Rocking-Horse Winner" by D. H. Lawrence, one sees that it is a story about a little boy who rides his rocking horse to secretly gain money to buy his mother the happiness that she so secretly aches for. It is in retrospect, however, that one realizes that the story is not about the little boy but rather about his mother Hester and how she secretly loves her son, Paul.To see that Hester is actually

Similar Essays

Daddy By Sylvia Plath And The Rocking Horse Winner By D. H. Lawrence

1351 words - 5 pages Having a parental figure in your life can change you as a person in a negative or positive way. “Daddy” by Sylvia Plath and “The Rocking Horse Winner” by D. H. Lawrence are both works of literature that exemplify the meaning of the quotation of C.S Lewis. In this way both works of literature were relatable when the authors provided daily life situations involving disillusionment, parental responsibility and children having troubled relationship

The Hidden Truth In The Rocking Horse Winner By D. H. Lawrence

1135 words - 5 pages The Hidden Truth in "The Rocking-Horse Winner" by D. H. Lawrence       The plot in "The Rocking-Horse Winner" by D. H. Lawrence reveals to the reader conflicts between Paul and his mother using different levels or forms of secrecy. There are secrets hidden throughout the house that leads Paul and his mother to an unpleasant life. The first level of secrecy is the actual secrets that Paul and Paul's mother keep from each other. The second

D. H. Lawrence's The Rocking Horse Winner

1530 words - 6 pages D. H. Lawrence's The Rocking-Horse Winner “The Rocking-Horse Winner” is a short story by D. H. Lawrence in which he creates a criticism of the modernized world’s admiration and desire for material objects. It was published in Harper’s Bazaar magazine in 1926 for the first time (E-Notes). The story’s main character, Hester, is a beautiful woman who is completely consumed by the idea of possession, and so she loses out on the love of family

The Rocking Horse Winner By D.H. Lawrence

1130 words - 5 pages . Hester's tragic ending reveals to the readers that the desire of wealth and material possessions with little interest in spiritual matters isolates one from love, creates more dissatisfaction, and destroys one's life eventually. Works Cited: Lawrence, D. H. The Rocking Horse Winner." The Norton Anthology of Short Fiction. R. V. Cassill, ed. New York: W. W.