Marxist Elements in Lady Chatterley's Lover

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Lady Chatterley’s Lover provides a resounding insight into the class struggle in the early 20th century and particularly the transition from rural, agricultural living to a new urban life, termed as industrialisation. From an outside view it’s easy to understand why this can be interpreted as a Marxist novel, as it throws up both the clash between Lady Chatterley and Mellors and both social and economic boundaries between individuals. Arguably the strongest indictment of the class system in the novel and the most impacting from a Marxist viewpoint comes in chapter 11, ‘ The car plowed uphill through Tevershall, blackened brick dwellings, the mud black with coal dust, it was as if dismalness had soaked through everything’, ‘ Tevershall, that was Tevershall! Merrie England! Shakespeares England? No, it was producing a new type of mankind, over-conscious in the money and social and political side’. Connie’s description of Tevershall is evidently damning. The mode of production is switching in the new industrial outlook, farmers are being replaced by factory workers, and the effect both on the landscape and people is total. The working class’s exploitation is continuing but the conditions and living standard they live in is changing. Tevershall is an example of a mining town, where rows and rows of monotonous accommodation would be built, brick dwellings in which the oppressed workers would reside. Wragby represents the complete opposite. It is the symbol of the surviving aristocratic nobility and the power they hold over the proletariat working class. DH Lawrence is criticizing the transformation of England’s former self, with its cottages and large stately homes into the new industrialised England symbolised by Tevershall and the collieries. Interestingly the characterisation which appears in chapter 11 is submissive of the mining class. Connie herself imagines bearing a child from a mine worker, ‘children from such men! Oh god! Oh God!’. In this sense she appears...
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