Happy Birthday D.H. Lawrence!

11 March 1885 – 2 March 1930

I used to do this little segment over on youmeandbooks.tumblr.com called Literary Birthdays where I spotlight on the author whose birthday it is and I want to continue it over here starting off with D.H. Lawrence. Unfortunately, I’ve only read Lady Chatterly’s Lover but definitely want to read more by Lawrence, he was featured heavily on a Modernism course at at uni although I shied away from Modernism at the time and didn’t take the course (which I regret now!)

D.H. Lawrence was born in March 1885 to a working-class family and he grew up in Nottinghamshire. He began writing poems and short stories at a young age and after qualifying to be a teacher, he left his childhood town for London to teach. It was here his work caught the attention of Ford Maddox Ford who published the Odour of Chrysanthemums in The English Review. A couple of years after, his first novel, The White Peacock, was published.

Lawrence was a prolific writer of the 20th century and his works expanded from novels to poems to paintings critical essays. Often controversial, his works explored sexuality, nature and the impact of the industrial revolution. For his radical views, his works often faced censorship (Lady Chatterly’s Lover was banned for being too “pornographic”) and he faced persecution. The later half of his life was spent in what he called a “savage pilgrimage”, travelling as far as he could from Italy to Australia to Mexico. He died from Tuberculosis in 1930 in France.

Famous Novels include Lady Chatterly’s Lover, Sons and Lovers and Women in Love, if you have a Kindle, Amazon offers free ebooks of several of Lawrence’s works.


‘A woman has to live her life, or live to repent not having lived it.’ – Lady Chatterly’s Lover

‘For my part, I prefer my heart to be broken. It is so lovely, dawn-kaleidoscopic within the crack.’ – Pomegranate

‘But better die than live mechanically a life that is a repetition of repetitions.’ – Women in Love

‘Vitally, the human race is dying. It is like a great uprooted tree, with its roots in the air. We must plant ourselves again in the universe.’- Lady Chatterly’s Lover

Notable adaptations

Sons and Lovers, 1960 –  nominated for numerous awards and won the Golden Globe for Best Director

Women in love, 1969 – stars Glenda Jackson and Alan Bates with Jackson winning the Academy Award for Best Actress

The Rainbow, 1989 – the prequel to Women in Love stars Glenda Jackson, Paul McGann and Sammi Davis.

Lady Chatterly’s Lover, 2015 – this BBC adaptation stars Holliday Grainger, Richard Madden and James Norton

If you have any adaptations you’d like me to check out or you have a recommendation for which D.H. Lawrence novel I should tackle, let me know!


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