The Horse Dealer's Daughter by D. H. Lawrence

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In D.H. Lawrence's, "The Horse Dealer's Daughter," what elements in the plot demonstrate the concept of realism?

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English Realism is the response by writers at the turn of the century against the Romantic literary movement that idealized life. The distinction between "romance" and "realism" is important. Romanticism does not refer to love stories. It refers to...

...escapism, wishful thinking, unrealism.

Realism was the opposite, referring to literature that was...

...'relevant to real life'...

Writers of English Realism were strongly affected by changes caused by the Industrial Revolution—such as oppressed women and children victimized by manufacturing, coal mining, etc.

"The Horse Dealer's Daughter" is about a family dissolving. The horse dealer's sons have options. His daughter Mabel does not—she is a young woman of grit and pride. At twenty-seven, little opportunity stands on Mabel's horizon, but she refuses to bow to her brothers' demands that she go to live with a married sister or become a nurse.

Mabel did not take any notice...They had talked at her and round her for so many years, that she hardly heard them at all.

Mabel has cared for her brothers, regardless of the kind of men they are. It has made her feel "established and brutally proud." She has no friends, her mother is long-dead, and now she really is alone. But...

She would follow her own way...She would always hold the keys of her own situation.

Jack Fergusson, a local physician, stops by to ask after the family. Jack, not the town's senior doctor, is a "mere hired assistant." He dashes about helping others. Though it is "work, drudgery...", Jack loves it, but his only connection to the town is Mabel's family, and they are leaving. He watches Mabel, "intrigued" by her quiet defiance, though she causes him some discomfort.

Later Mabel visits...

(The entire section contains 613 words.)

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