International Journal of
English and Literature

  • Abbreviation: Int. J. English Lit.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2141-2626
  • DOI: 10.5897/IJEL
  • Start Year: 2010
  • Published Articles: 278


Sigmund Freud’s psychoanalytic theory Oedipus complex: A critical study with reference to D. H. Lawrence’s “Sons and Lovers”

Sofe Ahmed
Ideal College, Sylhet, Bangladesh
Email: [email protected]

  •  Accepted: 06 February 2012
  •  Published: 31 March 2012



Sigmund Freud and his Oedipus complex are among the most often discussed critical and contentious issues of modern psychology and literature. Freud has brought lot of controversies in the field of modern psychology and literary trend through his theory Oedipus complex. Contrariwise, in some other assessor’s notions his concept of Oedipus complex deserves a great deal of appreciation. Nonetheless, prominent English novelist D.H. Lawrence is one of those modern writers who are greatly influenced by Freudian theories and have been promoting Freud’s notions through their works. His “sons and lovers” are considered as one of the most modern as well as controversial novels of the twentieth century. In this fiction, the protagonist Paul’s extremely emotional dealings with his mother are the illustration of Doctor Freud’s psychological theory Oedipus complex. Nevertheless, this paper aims to critically analyze the facts lying with the hallucination of Oedipus complex as it is presented in “Sons and Lovers”. The evaluation is conducted liberally and objectively as well as through comparisons between the central characters of Lawrence’s “Sons and Lovers” and Sophocles’ King Oedipus. This attempt also tends to judge the universality of Freud’s claim particularly sexual theory with the help of modern biological experiments and the result of relevant laboratory tests, conducted by eminent psychologists and psychiatrists. In short, the critique ultimately endeavors to find out a factual solution for the controversies, raised by Oedipus complex, with the help of logic, fact and scientific researches.


Key words: Freudian psychoanalysis, Oedipus complex, “Sons and Lovers”