Posted August 9, 2011on:
Lawrence’s short stories are always interesting and often brilliant when he doesn’t load the plot with a lot of clumsy polemic. This is one of his more entertaining ones and has all his characteristic hallmarks. The theme of an Anglican clergyman strangling nascent sensuality and an earthy, untutored gypsy bringing it back to life is one that is threaded through all his work. In this story and in these characters he has found the perfect expression of it, which is probably why it is so famous. It is less sensational than the title suggests. It is more subtle, and, in my view, more successful than Lady Chatterley’s Lover. But, of course, it is very lightweight compared to the stunning achievement of his longer novels, particularly The Rainbow and Women in Love.