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Sexual Relations in D.H. Lawrence

            "The true living world of fire is dark, throbbing, darker than blood. Our luminous world that we go by is only the white lining of this" (Dionys to Daphne in "The Ladybird"). What narrative strategies does Lawrence employ to convey this sense of a world "darker than blood"? How do these strategies organise his explorations of sexual relations in Three Novellas?.
             Perhaps the most profound aspect of Lawrence's Three Novellas and in particular The Fox and The Ladybird is the deep current of complex sexual relations. However, in order to fully recognise this element, it is necessary to be familiar with some of Lawrence's own views on sexual relations. An essay by Lawrence written ten years prior to the works in question, "The Birth of Sex" in Fantasia of the Unconscious, outlines some of his theories. One of the main points he makes is that of "vital sex polarity" whereby he maintains that men and women are completely different beings, made up of cells completely unique to their sex. This opposition is the basis of sex, as "the magic and dynamism of the unity rests on otherness." Sex itself relies on this otherness, as it is the result of "a circuit of force always flowing" similar to electricity, and the actual act of coition is when "a great flash of interchange occurs, like an electric spark when two currents meet or like lightning out of the densely surcharged clouds." With this understanding, it is possible to detect various narrative strategies used by Lawrence to explore the underlying sexual relations. Within The Fox and The Ladybird, it is possible to reduce these to the concepts of numerous dichotomies, a tripartite character composition, the dream as a vessel, animal and primitive connotations, and the will of the sub-conscious.
             There are many similarities in The Fox and The Ladybird, some more obvious than others. There is the recurrence of the tripartite structure due to the return of a war veteran, and also the allegorical representations of these three characters.

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