Burning Man: The Ascent of DH Lawrence (Hardback)
  • Burning Man: The Ascent of DH Lawrence (Hardback)

Burning Man: The Ascent of DH Lawrence (Hardback)

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Hardback 512 Pages / Published: 27/05/2021
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On the centenary of the publication of Women in Love, Wilson traces the mercurial early career of D.H. Lawrence, attempting to untangle the truth about one of the most complex and divisive of modernist writers.   

Longlisted for the Baillie Gifford Prize for Non-Fiction 2021

D H Lawrence is no longer censored, but he is still on trial - and we are still unsure what the verdict should be, or even how to describe him.

History has remembered him, and not always flatteringly, as a nostalgic modernist, a sexually liberator, a misogynist, a critic of genius, and a sceptic who told us not to look in his novels for 'the old stable ego', yet pioneered the genre we now celebrate as auto-fiction. But where is the real Lawrence in all of this, and how - one hundred years after the publication of Women in Love - can we hear his voice above the noise?

Delving into the memoirs of those who both loved and hated him most, Burning Man follows Lawrence from the peninsular underworld of Cornwall in 1915 to post-war Italy to the mountains of New Mexico, and traces the author's footsteps through the pages of his lesser known work.

Wilson's triptych of biographical tales present a complex, courageous and often comic fugitive, careering around a world in the grip of apocalypse, in search of utopia; and, in bringing the true Lawrence into sharp focus, shows how he speaks to us now more than ever.

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
ISBN: 9781408893623
Number of pages: 512
Weight: 888 g
Dimensions: 234 x 153 mm


'A brilliantly unconventional biography, passionately researched and written with a wild, playful energy.  A new Lawrence emerges: a thinker, travel writer and essayist of strange, absurd, irrepressible genius' - Richard Holmes

'Dare we hope that Lawrence might soon assume his rightful place - neither messiah nor pariah - as a writer of boundless freshness, originality and breadth? If so Frances Wilson's stimulating and utterly enthralling book will be seen to play a vital role in the long-awaited rehabilitation of the man who, in the words of poet Tony Hoagland, "burned like an acetylene torch/ from one end to the other of his life' - Geoff Dyer

'"How can biography do justice to Lawrence's complexities?" asks this book. Frances Wilson shows us exactly how. Hers is the most original voice in life-writing today' - Lucasta Miller, author of Keats

'No biography of Lawrence that I have read comes close to Burning Man in getting across both his unquenchable fire and his appalling ruthlessness. After reading almost every page, you think "what a monster!" but then at the same time "what an eye!" - for people, landscape, birds, the whole world really. It's a wonderful book' - Ferdinand Mount

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“A biography of a literary genius.”

D.H.Lawrence is one of the most interesting authors in English literature with his works censored and gone on to trial.

Wilson’s biography divides Lawrence’s life in three categories. Inferno ; his early years,... More

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