42 pages 1 hour read

D. H. Lawrence

The Rainbow

Fiction | Novel | Adult | Published in 1915

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Chapters 13-16Chapter Summaries & Analyses

Chapter 13 Summary: “The Man’s World”

Ursula returns home “to fight with her mother” (328). Ursula resents the “enforced” domesticity Anna lives under, and Will does his best to stay out of their fighting by focusing on his crafts. In addition to woodworking, Will models clay, paints, makes jewelry, and works metal. Ursula worries for Anton, who is still fighting in the Boer War. She fears her relationship with Winifred extinguished even the smallest flame of desire within herself, and remembering her past with Winifred and Anton is like remembering someone now dead.

Ursula soon dreams of doing more with her life than housework. On advice from her former headmistress, and with Will’s intervention to keep her close to home, Ursula becomes a teacher at the Brinsley Street school nearby. Ursula looks forward to teaching and imagines her students will love her. However, she loses control of her class, and the children mock her. Ursula confides in her colleagues about her difficulties controlling her class, and the women all agree Ursula needs to take a sterner approach to ensure order.

One of her students, a boy called Williams, is particularly troublesome. After one episode in which Williams refuses her direction and disrupts other students’ work, Ursula beats him with a cane.