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Record 26391

Reading Experience:

'On the way up I read Lady Chatterley's Lover, in the new full continental edition a friend got from Germany. I now retract what I said that DHL's letters are more important than his novel. Lady C. is a vastly important book. I understand it. I understand it as necessary. It is delicate and pure. One of the purest things I have ever read. It is far too long. But the strong necessary teaching is there. In parts its as direct and simple as the Bible. Its an amazing love-song; no not a love-song, a life-song. It has given me confidence and courage. It could purge the world.Nevertheless I feel its a thing, a teaching, I must take and pass. I could not stay just in that region. That was Lawrence. But I feel that my goal is quite different. I salute Lady Chatterley, & I will not say leave it behind, but leave it aside. As I said in my last, sex is to art what sleep is to waking life. Full spiritual wakefulness is without sex & is a new innocence, a new childishness if you like.'
Century: 1900-1945
Date: Between 15 Jun 1933 and 7 Jul 1933
Country: Auckland, North Island
Time: n/a
Place: n/a
Type of Experience (Reader):
silent aloud unknown
solitary in company unknown
single serial unknown
Type of Experience (Listener):
solitary in company unknown
single serial unknown

Reader/Listener/Reading Group:

Reader:Walter D'Arcy Cresswell
Age Adult (18-100+)
Gender Male
Date of Birth 22 Jan 1896
Socio-economic group: Professional / academic / merchant / farmer
Occupation: Poet
Religion: n/a
Country of origin: New Zealand
Country of experience: Auckland, North Island
Listeners present if any:
(e.g. family, servants, friends, workmates)
Additional comments: n/a


Text Being Read:

Author: David Herbert Lawrence
Title: Lady Chatterley's Lover
Genre: Fiction
Form of Text: Print: Book
Publication details: 1933 full continental edition probably in English but published in Germany
Provenance: unknown


Source Information:

Record ID: 26391  
Source - Print  
  Author: Walter D'Arcy Cresswell
  Editor: Helen Shaw
  Title: Dear Lady Ginger an exhange of letters between Lady Ottoline Morrell and D'Arcy Cresswell together with Ottoline Morrell's essay on Katherine Mansfield.
  Place of Publication: London
  Date of Publication: 1984
  Vol: n/a
  Page: 64
  Additional comments: n/a

Citation: Walter D'Arcy Cresswell, Helen Shaw (ed.), Dear Lady Ginger an exhange of letters between Lady Ottoline Morrell and D'Arcy Cresswell together with Ottoline Morrell's essay on Katherine Mansfield. (London, 1984), p. 64,, accessed: 25 May 2020

Additional comments:

This is an extract of a letter to Ottoline Morrell dated July 7(circa)1933 and refers to previous correspondence about Lawrence;specifically a letter dated early June 1933 where Cresswell writes 'Lawrence's letters will, I believe, rank above his books, tho' not above his paintings.' It is perhaps worth noting that at the time of writing, Cresswell had 'left home suddenly, with all my baggage & no money'. This and his financial circumstances having forced Cresswell to leave England(and the literary company that circled around Ottoline)and return to his parents' home in New Zealand might account for the emotive nature of his response to the Novel.He writes of relief 'to have left the great mountain chain which was oppressing me'.



Reading Experience Database version 2.0.  Page updated: 27th Apr 2016  3:15pm (GMT)