The Lost Girl

D. H. LAWRENCE (1885 - 1930)

"There is no mistake about it, Alvina was a lost girl. She was cut off from everything she belonged to."

In this most under-valued of his novels, Lawrence once again presents us with a young woman hemmed in by her middle-class upbringing and (like Ursula Brangwen in The Rainbow) longing for escape. Alvina Houghton's plight, however, is given a rather comic and even picaresque treatment. Losing first her mother, a perpetual invalid, and later her cross-dressing father, a woefully ineffectual small-scale entrepreneur, Alvina feels doomed to merge with the tribe of eternal spinsters who surround her in the dreary mining community of Woodhouse.

Into this drab environment enter the Natcha-Kee-Tawara: a polyglot, poly-amorous troupe of travelling players united, on- and off-stage, in a fantasy of Native American nomadism. Enter Ciccio, the surly dark-eyed horseman. The Italian's potent and threatening physicality overwhelms Alvina and soon will propel her into - what? Perdition, or the paradoxical freedom of a girl who 'like(s) being lost'?

(Summary by Martin Geeson)

Genre(s): Literary Fiction

Language: English

Section Chapter Reader Time
Play 01 Chapter I - THE DECLINE OF MANCHESTER HOUSE Tony Foster
00:53:08
Play 02 Chapter II - THE RISE OF ALVINA HOUGHTON Tony Foster
00:20:57
Play 03 Chapter III - THE MATERNITY NURSE Tony Foster
00:32:35
Play 04 Chapter IV - TWO WOMEN DIE Tony Foster
00:36:57
Play 05 Chapter V (Part 1) - THE BEAU Tony Foster
00:36:32
Play 06 Chapter V (Part 2) - THE BEAU Tony Foster
00:34:03
Play 07 Chapter VI (Part 1) - HOUGHTON'S LAST ENDEAVOUR Tony Foster
00:40:22
Play 08 Chapter VI (Part 2) - HOUGHTON'S LAST ENDEAVOUR Tony Foster
00:40:24
Play 09 Chapter VII (Part 1) - NATCHA-KEE-TAWARA Tony Foster
00:42:15
Play 10 Chapter VII (Part 2) - NATCHA-KEE-TAWARA Tony Foster
00:42:40
Play 11 Chapter VIII (Part 1) - CICCIO Tony Foster
00:34:30
Play 12 Chapter VIII (Part 2) - CICCIO Tony Foster
00:29:01
Play 13 Chapter IX (Part 1) - ALVINA BECOMES ALLAYE Tony Foster
00:51:22
Play 14 Chapter IX (Part 2) - ALVINA BECOMES ALLAYE Tony Foster
00:51:38
Play 15 Chapter X - (Part 1) - THE FALL OF MANCHESTER HOUSE Tony Foster
00:40:59
Play 16 Chapter X - (Part 2) - THE FALL OF MANCHESTER HOUSE Tony Foster
00:41:40
Play 17 Chapter XI (Part 1) - HONOURABLE ENGAGEMENT Tony Foster
00:39:51
Play 18 Chapter XI (Part 2) - HONOURABLE ENGAGEMENT Tony Foster
00:33:51
Play 19 Chapter XII - ALLAYE ALSO IS ENGAGED Tony Foster
00:27:16
Play 20 Chapter XIII - THE WEDDED WIFE Tony Foster
00:24:07
Play 21 Chapter XIV - THE JOURNEY ACROSS Tony Foster
00:57:15
Play 22 Chapter XV - THE PLACE CALLED CALIFANO Tony Foster
00:23:18
Play 23 Chapter XVI - SUSPENSE Tony Foster
00:48:22