The Rocking-Horse Winner Questions and Answers
by D. H. Lawrence

The Rocking-Horse Winner book cover
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How does the real 1920's England parallel with the setting and plot of "The Rocking Horse Winner"? So for our AP English class, we were told to make a chart that shows the similarities between The Rocking Horse Winner and other fairytales in general. Then we were told to add another column to explain how some of these connections were existent due to the setting in the 1920's England. ex the inflation probably caused Paul's family to be "poor" and needing more money. Thats pretty much the only one I have! So please help me ASAP!! Thanks in advance!

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Well, you may find it useful to know that this story is actually based on a real 1920's life. Lawrence wrote this story for his friend Lady Cynthia Asquith. Cynthia was born into the upper class of British society, the daughter of the eleventh Earl of Wemyss. She married a man with too little money and was always short of cash. Her sons found her to be a neglectful mother whose love was conditional, depending on their successes. Lawrence translated his impressions of the Asquith family into this story.

Added to this, in general Lawrence viewed men and women as torn between the promptings of their instincts (which he saw as good) and the demanding voices of their upbringing and education (which he saw as being inhibitive and destructive). In his writing he clearly tries to celebrate life. What opposes this, according to Lawrence, is materialism.

Hopefully that will give you some ideas about the background of this excellent short story.

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