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Conformity in The Rocking-Horse Winner by D.H. Lawrence

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In The Rocking-Horse Winner by D.H. Lawrence, the family was unable to

see what they really had going for them.

Corrupted Conformity

Many times, people believe that they must achieve a certain social

status within a community due to the need of acceptance, or perhaps,

simply the fear of being rejected. Communities normally demonstrate a

positive atmosphere. They are supposed to be places where everyone

knows and is kind to one another; one where people feel comfortable

with each other. Although the idea of community and solidarity is

usually something to be looked at in a positive way, as illustrated in

“The Rocking-Horse Winner”, “The Lottery”, and “The Shining Houses”,

certain individuals suffer greatly when they are presented with the

idea, or forced, to conform.

In “The Rocking-Horse Winner” by D.H. Lawrence, the family was unable

to see what they really had going for them, or more so the mother,

until it was gone. The mother was so concerned with the fact that she

had no money, and what the town would think of her. She was one of

those people who needed to feel accepted within a community. Never did

she show love towards her children, “When her children were present,

she felt the center of her heart go hard” (Lawrence 18). The family

was not necessarily all that poor; it was just how the mother

perceived the situation. She was a very materialistic woman and

therefore felt the need to spend whatever money she got on all the

chicest, most expensive items. Just because she did not have any

money, did not mean that she couldn’t lead others to believe she did.

Or so she thought. She had her children believing that they, too,

needed to find a way to get more money; her son Paul did.

Unfortunately, ...

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...lly presented. One woman plainly states

her case, and the point that all the community thinks about is how it

looks to others: “It’s unfortunate. We all know that. But we have to

think of the community” (Munro 72). They are plainly aware that what

they want is wrong, but because they want what’s best for the so-called

community, they are willing to sacrifice the happiness and well-being of

Mrs. Fullerton.

For some people, being well-known, having money, and being recognized

is more important that some of life’s requirements, such as love.

People are willing to sacrifice what good they have in their lives, in

order to appear more appealing to others. What others think of them is

their top priority. It is unfortunate that in most cases, this way of

thinking has the ability to ruin a person. Why be like everyone else,

when they could be their own person?
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