The Well of Loneliness: A 1920s Classic of Lesbian Fiction

Overview

First published in 1928, this timeless portrayal of lesbian love is now a classic. The thinly disguised story of Hall's own life, it was banned outright upon publication and almost ruined her literary career.

Originally published in 1928, Radclyffe Hall's The Well of Loneliness is the timeless story of a lesbian couple's struggle to be accepted by "polite" society. Shockingly candid for its time, this novel was the very first to condemn homophobic society for its ...

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The Well of Loneliness: The Classic of Lesbian Fiction

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More About This Book

Overview

First published in 1928, this timeless portrayal of lesbian love is now a classic. The thinly disguised story of Hall's own life, it was banned outright upon publication and almost ruined her literary career.

Originally published in 1928, Radclyffe Hall's The Well of Loneliness is the timeless story of a lesbian couple's struggle to be accepted by "polite" society. Shockingly candid for its time, this novel was the very first to condemn homophobic society for its unfair treatment of gays and lesbians.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780385416092
  • Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 10/28/1990
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 448
  • Sales rank: 256,562
  • Product dimensions: 5.20 (w) x 8.01 (h) x 0.96 (d)

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Sort by: Showing all of 8 Customer Reviews
  • Posted November 4, 2008

    Too Much Overlooked

    Hall details social pressures, which were socially foregrounded much more in the past than they are today. So today, these things operate more in the background as prejudices. The thing of it is, the social pressure is still there to force conformity. That applies to everyone. The book has three things a modern reader has to get over: archaic theories of sexuality, purple passages, and novel expectations. The theory can be marveled at as a museum piece. The purple passages can be appreciated as period literary stuff. The denouement is anti-climactic; Stephen becomes an anti-hero. Those turns undercut things in a very subtle way. It's important for the book to end that way. Hall never wanted pity; she wanted to be heard.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 17, 2008

    Eh

    This story was alright but it could've have been much shorter. The most interesting points are few and far in between long monologues by the author on topics that I frankly didn't care about. Yet even though this book is no more uplifting than the title makes it sound, it did have some great points. It's worth a read, in fact it you should read it, just don't expect it to be reminiscent of Idgie and Ruth's story. P.S. If you don't know the meaning of the word queer before reading this book you most certainly will by the time you have finished it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 8, 2003

    Wonderful book

    This book gets off to a slow start, and I did not think I would enjoy it, but certain parts of young Stephen's life reflect mine, so I kept going just to see what would happen. The book picks up pace in the later chapters and continues to get better. A definite even for teens...

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 29, 2002

    Don't see what everyone is talking about

    I thought this story was a grueling read. I didn't care about the characters, therefore I didn't care what happened to them. This is only one of two books in my lifetime that I could not finish. I wanted to cry at the end of this book, I wanted to feel sorry for them, but I did not. The back of the book gives a summary and talks about a character named Mary as part of the main storyline. I was more than 3/4 through the book before we got to meet Mary. I have read much better.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 3, 2000

    A must for any gay person's library

    Yes, this is another coming of age type story. However, for the very first time, I read of a young person growing up in a very loving, supportive, if not idyllic environment. Alot of the alienation felt by the girl with neighborhood children will be familiar to the reader. The development of how she views herself and her place in the world progresses very logically and reflects, certainly, what almost every gay/lesbian person has experienced. I enjoyed the main character, Stephen, because she was intelligent, articulate and sensitive.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 11, 2000

    Just UTTERLY amazing =)

    This is for much one of the greatest novels I have ever read. Once you go on reading, it came to happen that you forget that such love exists between those so called 'inverted', but instead the purest feelings and human emotions show up. It is absolutely a smart choice for any open mind person, you will for sure find a great novel of The Well of Loneliness.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 28, 1999

    an issue to dwell further

    Being a lesbian in a world that would not recognise as 'normal' is not easy. The novel shows us clearly on that. I am doing a thesis on this novel but I have face the main obstacles on trying to find the materials in an Asian country. I do hope that you folks out there would aid me on making my thesis a piece of work that i can exposure them to fellow men and women.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 2, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

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