A "Strange Sapience"

The Creative Imagination of D. H. Lawrence


The aim of this book is twofold: to apply the basic insights of psychoanalytic thought to D. H. Lawrence and his works and to arrive at a deeper appreciation of creative processes in general. Although Lawrence himself was critical of psychoanalysis as a discipline, he nevertheless created a memorable body of fiction that probed the struggle of people trying to achieve wholeness in the face of constricting psychological and environmental obstacles. Though this creation of characters living on the edge of sanity, Lawrence portrayed with great intensity the stifling effects of an industrial social order on the sensual and creative sides of human activity. As a result, he is of lasting interest both for his fictional depiction of the problem of creativity and for his own turbulent striving toward wholeness. Informed by an attentive reading of Lawrence's total work, a thorough knowledge of his life, and a judicious application of modern psychoanalysis, A "Strange Sapience" provides a compelling account of Lawrence's artistic maturation. Dervin finds most useful those psychoanalytic writers who share an interest in self and object-relations over the earlier instinct theory of drive and defense, and those who appreciate normal developmental schemes rather than pathological patterns.

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