The Rainbow

The Rainbow

by David Herbert Lawrence
3.1 17

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Overview

The Rainbow by David Herbert Lawrence

The Rainbow is a 1915 novel by British author D. H. Lawrence. It follows three generations of the Brangwen family, particularly focusing on the sexual dynamics of, and relations between, the characters.

Lawrence's frank treatment of sexual desire and the power plays within relationships as a natural and even spiritual force of life, though perhaps tame by modern standards, caused The Rainbow to be prosecuted in an obscenity trial in late 1915, as a result of which all copies were seized and burnt. After this ban it was unavailable in Britain for 11 years, although editions were available in the USA.

The Rainbow was followed by a sequel in 1920, Women in Love. Although Lawrence conceived of the two novels as one, considering the titles The Sisters and The Wedding Ring for the work, they were published as two separate novels at the urging of his publisher. However, after the negative public reception of The Rainbow, Lawrence's publisher opted out of publishing the sequel. This is the cause of the delay in the publishing of the sequel.

Product Details

BN ID: 2940149066766
Publisher: Tower Publishing
Publication date: 08/14/2009
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
File size: 735 KB

About the Author

David Herbert Lawrence (11 September 1885 - 2 March 1930) was an important and controversial English writer of the 20th century, whose prolific and diverse output included novels, short stories, poems, plays, essays, travel books, paintings, translations, literary criticism and personal letters. His collected works represent an extended reflection upon the dehumanizing effects of modernity and industrialisation. In them, Lawrence confronts issues relating to emotional health and vitality, spontaneity, sexuality, and instinctive behaviour. Lawrence's unsettling opinions earned him many enemies and he endured hardships, official persecution, censorship and misrepresentation of his creative work throughout the second half of his life, much of which he spent in a voluntary exile he called his "savage pilgrimage." At the time of his death, his public reputation was that of a pornographer who had wasted his considerable talents. E. M. Forster, in an obituary notice, challenged this widely held view, describing him as "the greatest imaginative novelist of our generation." Later, the influential Cambridge critic F. R. Leavis championed both his artistic integrity and his moral seriousness, placing much of Lawrence's fiction within the canonical "great tradition" of the English novel. He is now generally valued as a visionary thinker and a significant representative of modernism in English literature, although some feminists object to the attitudes toward women and sexuality found in his works. Source: Wikipedia

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The Rainbow 3.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 17 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I've had a love/hate reaction to this novel. I've enjoyed parts of it, but the constant conflict between the changing couples is exhausting. Here's how the book goes: Brangwen man and a woman meet, reluctantly or not so reluctantly fall madly in love, get married. Then inexplicably, the man withdraws from the woman in hatred and disgust. (I wish at this point I'd have made a running count of the times Lawrence uses the words 'hate' or 'hatred' and 'rage'.) The wife, in spite of, or because of her husbands rage and hatred is unhappy or strangely content. Then, eventually, she reaches out to her husband to reconnect and he cruelly rebuffs her. Much weeping and wailing ensues. The husband continues on in his boiling black rage until suddenly he madly loves his wife again and seeks to reconcile. They come together immediately or eventually, madly passionate in vaguely worded sex scenes. They are content for about a day and a half then the same thing repeats with the wife retreating and blah blah blah. He acts like an unreasoned psychopath, she acts like a mental patient. And so on and so on for about 500 pages. This book more than anything vividly illustrates Lawrence's volatile, unstable, unhealthy relationships with women. I don't know why anyone would want to live that way and I'm not sure why anyone would want to read about it in a book. And, so you know, I am a life-long student of literature. I'm not mad at this book because it doesn't have vampires in it or that it doesn't reveal through clairvoyant means that Martin Sheen is going to blow up the world if he is elected president.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Provides family history that helps to illuminate the story of Women in Love.
ridgecat More than 1 year ago
This is not one of Lawrence's finest efforts. It pales beside Sons and Lovers and Lady Chatterley's Lover. I started reading it because is the prequel to Women in Love, my next-up Lawrence book. However, after laboring through 200+ pages, I gave up, something I rarely do. The Rainbow is tedious, repetitive and, at times, incredibly boring. There are descriptions of moods and feelings that alternate between love and hatred on a daily basis that go on for months and pages. In this book, Lawrence seems to discover a word, then become so fascinated with it he repeats it several times on each page. Then he becomes apparently bored with it, and it never again appears in the novel. Likewise with phrases and entire sentences. The multi-generational characters are complex and interesting, albeit in great need of therapy (which is why they are interesting). The Midlands scenery is painted with the finest brush strokes, and the life-altering events, however seldom they occur, are documented compellingly. But the book, at 500 pages, would greater impact the reader if half the length.
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Guest More than 1 year ago
I thought that the Rainbow was a very good book. The only problem i had with comprehending the storyline was that the charicters often contradicted themselves. Some of the events in the book are risque, and there are a few scenes that i thought were upseting.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Starclan (Rainclan)