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Fantasia of the Unconscious.
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LAWRENCE, D. H.

Fantasia of the Unconscious.

Published: New York: Thomas Seltzer, 1922

Stock code: 83380

Price: £7,500

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This item is on show at 100 Fulham Road (map)

First edition, first impression, presentation copy to E. M. Forster, inscribed by the author to E. M. Forster on the front free endpaper, “E.M., from D.H.L. Taos, 6 Nov 1922” and with Forster’s “This book belongs to…” ticket. Forster and Lawrence met in 1915, when Forster visited Lawrence at Greatham, sharing “two hours walk in the glorious country”, interspersing a searching philosophical debate with “breaks to look at birds, catkins, etc.” From this date they were firm friends, sharing correspondence (even after Lawrence settled in Taos in 1922) and a strong sense of intellectual camaraderie throughout their lives. Indeed, when Lawrence died in 1930, Forster was notable as the most sympathetic voice among a flurry of dismissive obituaries, hailing Lawrence as “the greatest imaginative novelist of our generation”. Much later, in 1960, Forster appeared as a witness for the defence in the obscenity trial over Penguin’s unexpurgated publication of Lady Chatterley’s Lover. An excellent association copy of Lawrence’s philosophical follow-up to Psychoanalysis and the Unconscious (1921), boldly feted on the jacket as “the most important work that has appeared since the publication of Nietzsche’s Zarathustra”.

Octavo. Original blue cloth, titles gilt to spine and front board. With the supplied dust jacket. Housed in a dark blue quarter morocco solander box by the Chelsea Bindery. Spine dulled, ends and corners rubbed, hinges just starting but overall a very good copy in the mildly spine-faded and lightly soiled dust jacket, with a few very small chips and tears to edges and some tape repair to head of spine panel verso.

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