"The Rocking-Horse Winner" is a short story by D. H. Lawrence. It was first published in July 1926, in Harper's Bazaar and subsequently appeared in the first volume of Lawrence's collected short stories.
The manner of narration
The story is being told in the 3d person singular, so the whole narration is rather objective. The author is capable of not only describing the events, which happen at the period of time embraced by the story, but also tells the reader about the life of the young King before that.
The forms of narration
The text of the story is not homogeneous. The narration is interrupted by direct speech, which is represented by short dialogues. But there is not a lot of places where the story occurs.
The composition of the text
Being a whole short story, the extract under investigation comprises introduction, plot and ending.
Introduction of the story embraces the following part:
There was a woman who was beautiful, who started with all the advantages, yet she had no luck. She married for love, and the love turned to dust. She had bonny children, yet she felt they had been thrust upon her, and she could not love them.
Plot develops within the following part:
There were a boy and two little girls. They lived in a pleasant house, with a garden, and they had discreet servants, and felt themselves superior to anyone in the neighborhood.
Although they lived in style, they felt always an anxiety in the house. There was never enough money.
Ending of the text is accompanied by such a passage:
-Mother, did I ever tell you? I am lucky!"
-"No, you never did," said his mother.
But the boy died in the night.
And even as he lay dead, his mother heard her brother's voice saying to her, "My God, Hester, you're eighty-odd thousand to the good, and a poor devil of a son to the bad. But, poor devil, poor devil, he's best gone out of a life where he rides his rocking-horse to find a winner."
The general slant of the text
The general slant of the text is dramatic and emotional. This effect is achieved by the use of unexpected turns of the plot, wide usage of metaphors and personification.
The linguostylistic analysis proper
I Phonographic analysis
Graphon Ė the intentional violation of the graphical shape of a word (or word combination) used to reflect its authentic pronunciation.
e.g."Hallo, you young jockey! Riding a winner?"
The hyphen is a punctuation mark used to join words and to separate syllables of a single word. The use of hyphens is called hyphenation.
Change of the print is applied to enhance the meaning of the word:
e.g."There must be more money!"
"Filthy lucre does mean money"
"Then what is luck, mother?"
The punctuation in the story is traditional:
e.g.I promised him, honour bright, it was only between me and him; only you gave me that ten-shilling note I started winning with, so I thought you were lucky.
II Lexical analysis
The characteristic feature of the story is a very careful and accurate usage of words. The words are stylistically neutral. The communicative situation is highly informal. The vocabulary includes:
-standard colloquial words
e.g.house, mother, to say
e.g.The child had never been to a race-meeting before, and his eyes were blue fire.
The analysis of the vocabulary shows an obvious difference between words in the authorís narration and those in represented speech.
e.g."Well, I got there!" he announced fiercely, his blue eyes still flaring, and his sturdy long legs straddling apart.
Author shows childrenís interest in Paulís speech and adult wisdom and bitterness in the words of the mother.
e.g."Oh!" said the boy. "Then what is luck, mother?"
"It's what causes you to have money. If you're lucky you have money. That's why it's better to be born lucky than rich. If you're rich, you may lose your money. But if you're lucky, you will always get more money."