D.H. Lawrence and the Problem of the Pastoral by Callie O’Rourke

NEMLA poster O’Rourke Each year NEMLA, or the North Eastern Modern Language Association, hosts a conference wherein students and scholars gather to present their research projects and engage with the broader academic community. This years conference was significant in that it marked the 50th Anniversary of the conference, the theme being “Transnational Spaces: Intersections of Cultures, Languages and Peoples,” as well as the first time the conference has opened up a space for undergraduate students to present their works. I was chosen to be one of 20 undergraduate students to attend the conference and present on the topic that I have since begun to develop into my thesis. My project, D.H. Lawrence and the Problem of the Pastoral, is one that is explores D.H. Lawrence’s novel “Sons and Lovers” (1913) and the way that he engages with the problems that arise out of the industrialization of the early 20th century in England. These problems are largely concerned with the violation of the natural world and the way that technological advancements estrange humankind from both themselves and the world around them. Further, I am interested in the way that we can read this text, written just over a century ago is one that speaks to the ecological problems that grow ever more pervasive.

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