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Symbolism in The Rocking Horse Winner Essay Example

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Symbolism in The Rocking Horse Winner

Symbolism in The Rocking Horse Winner. She defines luck as “what causes you to have money.” She tells her son: “If you're lucky you have money" (Lawrence). By this way of thinking alone, one can deem Hester as a person who cares too much about what the society thinks of her. To boost her image, she prioritizes wants over those that are truly needed. This is clearly exemplified by the way she spends. She buys Paul an expensive rocking horse and her daughters a dollhouse inhabited by dolls in fancy dresses. However, she seems to have bought these items, not because of her love for her children but merely to show off since she “felt themselves superior to anyone in the neighborhood” (Lawrence).  When Paul questions the family’

s lack of money, Hester shallowly explains to her son how only luck can determine whether a person is going to be rich or fall into financial difficulties. Perhaps in an effort to please her and to at least show her affection for him, Paul tells his mother that he is lucky but she receives this claim cynically and angers him (“The Rocking-Horse Winner, D.H”; “The Rocking-Horse Winner Study”). As a result, Paul places his mother’s burden unto his shoulder and effectively becomes the tormented slave of her self-conceit and avarice for the finer things in life. He desperately attempts to be lucky by betting on racehorses after “madly” riding on his rocking horse. It is an even greater blow to the child when Hester still refuses to acknowledge him despite already receiving the full proof of his luck. Her unquenchable appetite for material things and superficiality led Paul to an identity crisis, of which he could no longer spot out his luck or understand what he must do to silence the deafening call for money in the house (Miles 189). As he desperately seeks to regain back the fortune he lost and please his mother more, he falls into illness and later dies with it. Before he lays dying, he tells Hester: "I never told you, mother, that if I can ride my horse, and get there, then I'm absolutely sure – oh absolutely! Mother, did I ever tell you? I am lucky!" (Lawrence). Symbolism in The Rocking Horse Winner.

Works Cited

Lawrence, David Herbert. “The Rocking-Horse Winner.” The Ghost Book: Sixteen New Stories of the Uncanny. Ed. Lady Asquith. London: Hutchinson, 1927. Print.

Miles, Kathryn. “D.H. Lawrence’s Short Stories: “The Horse Dealer’s Daughter” and “The Rocking Horse Winner.”” A Companion to the British and Irish Short Story. Eds. Cheryl Alexander Malcolm and David Malcolm. Oxford, UK: Blackwell Publishing, 2008. 183- 192. Print.

“The Rocking-Horse Winner, D.H. Lawrence.” Enotes.com. Enotes, n.d. Web. 23 July 2010. <http://www.enotes.com/short-story-criticism/rocking-horse-winner-lawrence-d-h>.

“The Rocking-Horse Winner Study Guide.” Bookrags.com. Bookrags, n.d. Web. 23 July 2010. <http://www.bookrags.com/studyguide-rockinghorsewinner/themes.html>.

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preview essay on Symbolism in The Rocking Horse Winner
  • Pages: 4 (1000 words)
  • Document Type: Essay
  • Subject: Literature
  • Level: College
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