Tag Archives: Derek Hawthorne

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German Cinema Classics 
Heimat (1938)

Heimat poster9,830 words

Heimat is one of the finest productions of Third Reich cinema, and by any standard it is an excellent film. The title means “homeland,” and in the minds of many the word Heimat is closely associated with National Socialist ideology. Indeed, a close study of this film can give us priceless insights into the true nature of that ideology. But the results may surprise you.

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D. H. Lawrence on the Metaphysics of Life

morpheus-iris-014,439 words

1. Life and the “Creative Mystery”

Lawrence believes that the chief thing modern science simply cannot explain is life itself. And he regards life as an irreducible, and ultimately inexplicable, primary. Read more …

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D. H. Lawrence’s Critique of Reductionism

peacock_peahen

Tobias Stranover, “Peacock, Peahen and Poultry in a Landscape,” 1684

3,141 words

In his essay “Why the Novel Matters,” Lawrence writes, “To the scientist, I am dead. He puts under the microscope a dead bit of me, and calls it me. He takes me to pieces, and says first one piece, and then another piece, is me.”[1] This is unfortunate because, as Lawrence never tires of repeating, “life, and life only, is the clue to the universe.”[2]

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German Cinema Classics 
Der Herrscher (1937)

derherrscher-large4,843 words

Der Herrscher (The Sovereign) is a fascinating film for a variety of reasons. The popular idea of cinema in the Third Reich is that is that every film was rife with propaganda. In fact, most films of the period were purely escapist fare, with minimal propaganda content. When propaganda was present, it often took the form of allegory (as in Kolberg), rather than speechifying or preaching. Read more …

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D. H. Lawrence’s Phallic Traditionalism

Sacred phalluses, Delos, Greece

Sacred phalluses, Delos, Greece

4,361 words

Sex and Religion

D. H. Lawrence argues that through the sex act, individuals participate in some kind of mysterious power running through nature. But does this momentary experience have any kind of long-term effect on them? Lawrence directly addresses this question. When the sex act is over, he writes, “The two individuals are separate again. But are they as they were before? Is the air the same after a thunderstorm as before? No. The air is as it were new, fresh, tingling with newness. Read more …

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D. H. Lawrence on the Meaning of Sex

Georgia O'Keeffe, "D. H. Lawrence Pine Tree," 1929

Georgia O’Keeffe, “D. H. Lawrence Pine Tree,” 1929

4,925 words

D. H. Lawrence is best known to the general public as a writer of sexy books. In his own time, his treatment of sex made him notorious and caused him to run afoul of the authorities on a number of occasions. I have no desire to rehearse in detail the well-known history of Lawrence’s troubles with censorship, Read more …

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D. H. Lawrence on Idealism & Evil

B.J.O. Nordfeldt, "D. H. Lawrence and the Three Fates"

B. J. O. Nordfeldt, “D. H. Lawrence and the Three Fates”

4,086 words

The Origin of Evil

D. H. Lawrence believed in the reality of evil, but he believed that its source lay in the human soul. “Abstraction is the only evil,” he wrote.[1] By abstraction he does not refer to the process of making generalizations or forming concepts. Instead, he means the tendency of human beings to abstract themselves from feeling, from intuition, from nature, and from the present. Abstraction is fundamentally evil, for Lawrence, because it makes most of humanity’s crimes possible.  Read more …

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D. H. Lawrence’s Critique of Idealism

3,603 words

D.H.-Lawrence-21The Nature of Mind

“We are now in the last stages of idealism,” Lawrence writes in Psychoanalysis and the Unconscious, and he goes on to claim that psychoanalysis is conducting us through those last stages.[1] Furthermore, he also tells us that idealism is “the one besetting sin of the human race.”[2] What does Lawrence mean by idealism, and why is he so opposed to it?

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D. H. Lawrence on the Unconscious

DHLawrence7,659 words

Lawrence and Psychoanalysis

Without question, the most unusual books D. H. Lawrence ever produced were his two “psychological” works: Psychoanalysis and the Unconscious (1921) and, especially, Fantasia of the Unconscious (1922). These texts are absolutely crucial for understanding Lawrence, for in them he sets forth an entire philosophy.

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The Journey to Tilsit:
A Song of Two Movies

Sunrise-Poster17,194 words

Many people consider F. W. Murnau’s Sunrise: Song of Two Humans (1927) to be the greatest film of the silent era. But most are unaware that it was remade under Hitler as Die Reise nach Tilsit (1939), and directed by the notorious Veit Harlan.

Both films were based upon a novella – titled Die Reise nach Tilsit (The Journey to Tilsit) – by Hermann Sudermann. Read more …

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