The Pursuit of Luck in D.H. Lawrence’s The Rocking Horse Winner Essay

The Pursuit of Luck in D.H. Lawrence’s The Rocking Horse Winner Essay

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Over time, society has developed into a widely accepted culture that spreads implied rules, guidelines, and principles on how people should conduct their lives. In order to follow the expectations of society, a person must be dedicated to acting in a manner that they are accepted by others. This results in a lack of lasting accomplishment since society’s customs can fluctuate, so a persons dedication to following societal norms to gain acceptance by others are now non-existent. On the contrary, people who have dedicated there life to a specific goal or cause may contradict society’s imposed customs, but will ultimately achieve their goal and have lasting success. In D.H. Lawrence’s “The Rocking Horse Winner”, Paul is determined to become lucky, and he initially pursues this goal instead of the materialism and greed of society. Thus, people who are determined to succeed in life must not follow society’s constraining and limiting influence, but focus on the end goal and use each circumstance they encounter to become closer to achieving that goal.
The society that Paul lives among spreads the idea that materialism and greed are the keys to lasting success in life. Paul grows up in a house that is constantly whispering ‘there must be more money,’ which symbolizes the families desire and greed for money. Paul is told that the reason why his parents are desperate for more money is because they are not lucky, but the reader learns that the parents are greedy. This is shown when it is explained that both of Paul’s parents had a reasonable income, but still not enough for the social position which they lived in. Paul’s parents were both materialistic, as they followed society’s influence and dedicated there life to gaining mone...


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...hest social status in the neighborhood. In the end, this only causes them to be greedy for more wealthy, resulting in their unhappiness and lack of satisfaction with their lives. On the contrary, Paul is determined to become lucky, and follows this goal instead of the convention of society. Although some people may look down of him for this, he eventually becomes lucky, and initially feels a deep sense of success and purpose. Though after becoming lucky, Paul’s motivation changes to greed, and his contentment is lost through his death. Paul was only able to become initially because he determined his goal in life, and used each circumstance he encountered to achieve this goal. In conclusion, it is only possible to feel contentment and lasting purpose in life by living not under the constraint and convention of society, but by the freedom of personal choices.

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