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In D.H. Lawrence’s ‘The Rocking Horse Winner’, many symbolic ideas are conveyed throughout the story. Paul’s method of looking at the world clashes with the ways in which the adults in the story view things. He is the only one in the story who appears to feel anything by any means. It’s possible that he must produce this feeling to compensate for the way that there is such minimal feeling in his life. Every character has unique characteristics which portray different symbolic themes and important ideas conveyed by Lawrence, such as money, family, religion, and moral diligence.

‘The Rocking-Horse Winner’ analyzes the effect that a mother’s own feelings of disappointment can have on her own child who craves her love and approval. Lawrence’s attraction toward mother-child connections somewhat originates from his association with his very own mother, an educated lady who regretted her choice in marrying Lawrence’s coal-miner father. The mother-son relationship in this story is a blend of unfulfilled want, nervousness, and terror. The main issue is that Paul’s mother, Hester, spills over her own sense of insufficiency onto Paul, who is made distraught by his frantic endeavors to satisfy her and gain her affection. Hester makes high-class living the main objective of her marriage. Thus, her relationship with her husband and the love and nurture for her children, specifically Paul, became stagnate. When the source of money became more available, she spent far more than she could afford. Hester’s spending and responsibility create a tension that is frequently present in the house and embodies itself over and over again murmuring the expression, ‘There must be more money.’. Hester’s external appearance might be misleading, but one trademark that stands apart was her materialistic frame of mind throughout everyday life.

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This story has great resemblance to parables and themes from The Bible like when Bassett seems to view Paul as a messenger from God, perhaps referencing St. Paul. In an unexpected turn, Paul turns into a Christ-like figure who doesn’t resurrect after three days but rather passes away after three days of becoming deathly ill. While the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ imply a moral redemption, Paul’s demise doesn’t offer any sort of redemption, just money. Lawrence in a few lines also includes, ‘Bassett was serious as a church.’. A congregation is a serious place where conversations of life, death, heaven, and the battle between being a good person and wickedness happen. These are not light issues, therefore, saying Bassett is as serious as a church implies that he is as genuine as the individuals who talk about such issues. He isn’t joking, being shameless, or kidding in any capacity. In the event that Bassett had not been so serious, Uncle Oscar probably won’t have trusted him. In the lines following that, Bassett is still very serious. He reveals to Uncle Oscar ‘in a secret, religious voice’ that Paul’s skill of picking winners is ‘as though he had it from heaven.’ which again is another religious reference. Bassett’s actions have been depicted as strict as far as how religious he is. However, here, Paul’s blessing is depicted as a supernatural occurrence, as though it’s been given to him by God. Bassett implies that he can not think of another reasonable explanation for how Paul keeps on picking his winners.

Dramatic irony is incorporated in the short story, specifically, ‘…seeking inwardly for luck. He wanted luck, he wanted it, he wanted it. … he would sit on his big rocking horse, charging madly into space.’ This collection of statements from the story shows the ambition that Paul had for obtaining luck. He would persevere relentlessly to be lucky and for his situation, this implied he would not stop riding his horse until he had the name of a horse that would bring him the win. The luck the horse’s names would bring consisted of money, he needed to have pleased his mother. It is a dramatic irony that the one thing Paul strived so tirelessly to get is also the one thing that murdered him. Paul frantically rode his rocking horse until his mother found him in one of his Frenzies, which is the point at which he fell. His last words were the idea that brought him release, ‘I am fortunate’! This is a case of dramatic irony in the sense that the character believes that winning the cash is what will help him succeed at winning over his mother’s approval. The nameless horse makes him feel that he is heading off to some place however he’s definitely not. It underlines his frame of mind about his strategies by the depiction of how he wildly rides it. Racing influences Paul since he becomes completely infatuated with it. His need for money continues developing, much like his mother, so he depends on betting. The old wage is to stake one’s own security, one would vow his life on the result of a duel or fight, eventually what Paul becomes. Paul is putting bets on horses and which one will win, however, figuratively he is relinquishing himself for affection.

Overall, the story shows us that at the end of the day, we must be consistent with ourselves. Shifting back and forth between one’s wants and expectations is a goal that cannot be sustainable long term. Genuine satisfaction will come once we choose to invest in something we energetically have assurance in, not on the terms that we’re only attempting to satisfy other individuals’ expectations. So, the moral of the story isn’t that gambling and betting is the end of the world. Betting is an alternate route to success. Along these lines, this moral is that shortcuts will regularly lead to destruction anyways. Consider businessmen who get into insider trading and athletes who use steroids. These are degenerate techniques and are viewed as dishonest or even illegal. It uses an ironic tone to focus on the values of love and risk in wealth by utilizing the tools of fantasy and imagery. If Paul had been taught that working hard to earn money was important, he possibly would have gotten less money, yet the lesson would have been learned.

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