The Rocking-Horse Winner Questions and Answers

The Rocking-Horse Winner

The rocking horse can be said to symbolize childhood, for one thing. Nobody but a small child could ride a rocking horse without breaking it. It can also be said to symbolize an interest in horses...

Latest answer posted August 5, 2014 6:19 am UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

That's quite a bit to tackle in one question, so be sure to check out the more developed answers posted at the eNotes link below. In a brief summary, here are those elements: Plot: The plot centers...

Latest answer posted September 7, 2019 3:17 am UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

There are two main forms of irony employed in this excellent short story by D. H. Lawrence. The first is situational irony, and we are presented with an example in the very first paragraph. Here...

Latest answer posted October 17, 2010 8:59 pm UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

The main conflicts in the story concern the family's lack of money to keep up with their social status and Paul's attempts to make his mother happy. Paul's mother is unhappy because she is in debt...

Latest answer posted October 13, 2016 3:39 pm UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

You only get one question, so I'll answer the first regarding "The Rocking-Horse Winner." The whispering is a personification (a coming to life) of the stress and dissatisfaction found in the...

Latest answer posted September 14, 2010 12:29 pm UTC

1 educator answer

The Rocking-Horse Winner

In D.H. Lawrence's short story "The Rocking Horse Winner," the voices symbolize the greed of his mother. When Paul enacts a plan intended to satisfy his mother's desire for more money in an effort...

Latest answer posted April 20, 2017 12:14 pm UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

Because the story has a fairy-tale quality, Lawrence is vague about the geographic details of the setting. We know it is set in England because Paul ends up betting on the derby and Paul will be...

Latest answer posted September 20, 2018 12:04 pm UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

It is clear from the story that what drives Paul to making himself ill is his repeated riding sessions on his rocking-horse. Paul is driven to finding out the results of the horse racing by his...

Latest answer posted October 31, 2010 6:28 am UTC

1 educator answer

The Rocking-Horse Winner

In D.H. Lawrence’s The Rocking-Horse Winner, the symbols of the rocking horse and the whispering are two important symbols that represent greed in the story. In his short story, Lawrence develops...

Latest answer posted April 29, 2011 2:40 am UTC

1 educator answer

The Rocking-Horse Winner

The whole problem in "The Rocking-Horse Winner" stems from the fact that Paul's mother cannot love her children because she is incapable of loving anybody. She tries to be a good mother, and she...

Latest answer posted May 29, 2016 5:27 pm UTC

1 educator answer

The Rocking-Horse Winner

D.H. Lawrence wrote "The Rocking-Horse Winner" in 1926 about a young boy, Paul, who can predict horse-race winners. The famous final lines of the story are: "I never told you, mother, that if I...

Latest answer posted April 10, 2012 5:14 pm UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

Paul's mother is a terribly greedy individual, and the birthday present is solid evidence supporting this characterization. Paul very selflessly and lovingly decides that he would like to give his...

Latest answer posted November 7, 2018 1:22 am UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

Paul's mother defines luck as that which "causes you to have money." She continues explaining to Paul: If you're lucky you have money. That's why it's better to be born lucky than rich. If you're...

Latest answer posted February 26, 2013 8:47 pm UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

In the text, it alludes to a strange fever that just takes over his body, rendering him weak, and eventually takes his life: "His eyes blazed at her for one strange and senseless second...Then he...

Latest answer posted May 29, 2009 12:06 pm UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

Uncle Oscar is drawing a contrast between the extraordinary luck of Paul's betting the horses and the absence of good fortune with regard to his life—and the fact that Paul is now dead. It's as if...

Latest answer posted April 28, 2019 1:21 am UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

The most obvious example of symbolism in this story is the rocking horse itself. It is clear that is has a symbolic function as it obviously stands for both itself and for something beyond itself....

Latest answer posted November 12, 2009 9:02 pm UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

Lawrence effectively uses foreshadowing in the story to highlight point of view. While the narrator is nominally omniscient, Lawrence never spells out the exact circumstances of Paul’s family’s...

Latest answer posted June 5, 2016 8:42 pm UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

Fairy tales typically have magical elements and teach a lesson that demonstrates an important cultural value. Fairy tales also involve a specific problem that must be solved and generally...

Latest answer posted September 17, 2018 9:27 am UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

In terms of the story's symbolism and themes about greed, Paul dies because his mother can not be satisfied. Even if he had continued winning more and more money, she would have simply craved more...

Latest answer posted January 29, 2016 9:15 pm UTC

1 educator answer

The Rocking-Horse Winner

The tone of "The Rocking-Horse Winner" is bleak and unhappy. It starts off, from the first paragraph, with a mother who believes she has no luck and finds she can't love her children. It moves from...

Latest answer posted February 28, 2019 12:23 pm UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

In D.H. Lawrence's "A Rocking Horse Winner," Paul's eyes are mentioned specifically ten separate times.“The boy watched her with unsure eyes; His eyes had a strange glare in them; The boy...

Latest answer posted January 3, 2009 2:16 pm UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

This is a great open-ended question; therefore, the answer is up for debate and will differ from reader to reader. Which answer is defended most depends a bit on the type of reader. A literal,...

Latest answer posted July 7, 2018 11:39 pm UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

There is a strange sort of conflict between Paul and his mother in "The Rocking-Horse Winner." Paul is the protagonist, and it is his story. He wants to please his mother, to make her happy, and to...

Latest answer posted March 6, 2015 11:14 pm UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

The title is ironic. Paul can determine which horse will win an upcoming race by riding his rocking horse, so in that sense he is a winner. He wins an enormous amount of money for his mother by...

Latest answer posted April 10, 2018 4:23 am UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

A good example of a simile can be found when Paul is talking to his uncle: And then the house whispers, like people laughing at you behind your back. It’s awful, that is! Paul uses this simile to...

Latest answer posted October 14, 2019 11:49 am UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

I would spend the first paragraph introducing the story just a little, mentioning that it focuses quite a bit on greed, and then at the end of the first paragraph, writing what I call a "theme...

Latest answer posted April 30, 2011 10:34 am UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

There are two ways to understand the family's economic condition: objectively and subjectively. Objectively, the family members are well off, with everything they need. They live in a fine house,...

Latest answer posted April 19, 2019 10:11 pm UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

The first supernatural element we notice in "The Rocking-Horse Winner" involves the whispering of the house. While it seems like a simple metaphor at first, we eventually learn through Paul that...

Latest answer posted February 24, 2019 7:22 pm UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

Paul notices the whisperings of his house that "There must be more money!"—most likely the personification of his parents' struggles to pay their bills due to "the social position they had to keep...

Latest answer posted June 14, 2019 11:12 pm UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

Only Hester and her children knew that Hester could not love anyone. To those outside the family, she appeared to be a good mother, one who adored her children. But Hester and her children knew of...

Latest answer posted April 4, 2013 9:30 pm UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

The main problem for Paul's family in the short story "The Rocking-Horse Winner" is his mother's inability to love. In the first paragraph of the story, Paul's mother, Hester, is described as being...

Latest answer posted August 17, 2018 11:20 am UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

The moral of any story is the lesson that can be learned from it. I would argue that there are a few lessons that can be learned from "The Rocking-Horse Winner." For starters, we learn about the...

Latest answer posted November 18, 2020 10:57 am UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

One of the most common morals of this story is that money and material possessions cannot substitute for love. There has also been a lot written about the Oedipal relationship between Paul and his...

Latest answer posted October 7, 2015 5:35 pm UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

Paul's mother Hester is portrayed in a decidedly unflattering way, as a shallow, self-centered woman, obsessed with money and social status. Although everyone thinks she's a good mother, in actual...

Latest answer posted October 13, 2019 9:40 am UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

Bassett is the "young gardener" who works for Paul's family. He is "a shortish fellow with a little brown mustache, and sharp little brown eyes." Basset had been "wounded in the left foot in the...

Latest answer posted March 22, 2010 4:45 am UTC

1 educator answer

The Rocking-Horse Winner

Yes, it is ironic that the whispers of the house grow in intensity as the boy continues to rock on the horse. That is the point of the story - chasing after more and more wealth doesn't bring true...

Latest answer posted March 15, 2008 9:31 am UTC

1 educator answer

The Rocking-Horse Winner

The story begins like a fairy tale because it will introduce an element of the supernatural, which is common in the fairy tale genre. Whether we realize it or not, we are cued how to read a story...

Latest answer posted September 13, 2018 11:55 pm UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

“The Rocking-Horse Winner” is a short story by D. H. Lawrence. The main character is a young boy named Paul, who worries about his mother because she confides that she has terrible money problems....

Latest answer posted December 25, 2019 8:48 pm UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

The irony of this statement is that Hester's brother thinks Hester will be better off for being eighty thousand pounds richer and that Paul is better off dead. In fact, neither Hester nor Paul...

Latest answer posted March 9, 2018 12:51 am UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

I think this question is spot on. "The Rocking Horse Winner" is absolutely an indictment against materialism. Paul's mother is an unhappy woman. She's not happy because she can't fill her world...

Latest answer posted July 15, 2018 3:09 am UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

It depends on what you label as the climax of the story. In my opinion, the climax of the story is when little Paul rides and rides and finally has the winner to The Derby. His mother rushes...

Latest answer posted March 8, 2009 10:25 am UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

Paul’s eyes are always described as blazing, blue, intense or uncanny. His eyes represent his dreams, his passion and the futility of his attempts to get luck for his mother. Eyes are the windows...

Latest answer posted September 20, 2012 3:47 am UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

The answer to this question is subjective; that means each reader could answer this question differently. Personally, I don't think that Paul must die at the end of this story. He could run away....

Latest answer posted January 23, 2019 4:32 pm UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

Paul is a sweet an innocent child who wants to help solve his family's financial problems and hopes to win approval and love from his cold and distant mother. He becomes fixated and anxious at...

Latest answer posted April 20, 2008 11:15 pm UTC

1 educator answer

The Rocking-Horse Winner

Paul's mother is greedy and incapable of being grateful for what she has. The fact that she will be given money over time is not enough for her. She want the entire amount at once. Instead of being...

Latest answer posted February 28, 2008 7:08 pm UTC

1 educator answer

The Rocking-Horse Winner

There are references to religion itself but these occur in discussions between Bassett and Uncle Oscar. After Oscar first discovers that Paul is interested in horse racing, Bassett tells him that...

Latest answer posted October 2, 2015 5:29 pm UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

The name "Malabar" could be said to have significance on a number of different levels. Firstly, it is the name given to part of the west coast of India, where a number of trading posts were...

Latest answer posted January 24, 2019 8:24 pm UTC

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The Rocking-Horse Winner

There are several key themes running through the story by D.H. Lawrence called "The Rocking-Horse Winner," and they could all be written about effectively in an essay, which is what I assume you...

Latest answer posted November 15, 2013 12:19 am UTC

1 educator answer

The Rocking-Horse Winner

Unfortunately, this relationship is quite one-sided. Paul desperately seeks the love and affections of his mother, but she doesn't reciprocate these feelings. In the beginning of the story, the...

Latest answer posted July 29, 2019 4:12 pm UTC

1 educator answer

The Rocking-Horse Winner

It is ironic indeed that Hester appears to have everything she could ever want in life yet still remains deeply unsatisfied with her lot. No matter how much money Paul wins for her, it's never...

Latest answer posted January 13, 2020 6:37 am UTC

3 educator answers

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