Scene from chatterly
Lawrence, after all, was one of the most highly regarded writers of his era.Hutchinson was concerned about page 258, however, where anal sex crops up – albeit obliquely.Certainly Griffith-Jones had missed the significance entirely, having referenced it only to underline the book’s general depravity.Mr Justice Byrne summed up with no reference to anal sex either.It is a passage which I have not – and I do not think anybody has – referred to during the course of cross-examination, or indeed at any time during this trial. describes what is called the ‘night of sensual passion’.He read out the whole passage remarking: “Not very easy, sometimes, not very easy, you know, to know what in fact he is driving at in that passage.” It’s not clear how many jurors understood the passage; some were said to be visibly shocked.
Though by 1960 the unexpurgated edition was sold in Europe and America and could be obtained under the counter in London if you knew where to go, Penguin co-founder Allen Lane wanted to publish a cheap paperback of the full thing.While homosexual anal sex between consenting men was legalised 50 years ago in the UK, the heterosexual equivalent became legal only at the millennium in England and Wales and was highly illegal in 1960.(The 2001 film Bridget Jones’ Diary celebrated legalisation with a pretty explicit scene between Renée Zellweger and Hugh Grant.) Illegal acts could still potentially use the public good defence, but Hutchinson feared it made the case much harder to win.The idea was to put it out at 3s 6d, the same price as ten cigarettes, to make it affordable for the “young and the hoi-polloi”.The excuse was the 30th anniversary of Lawrence’s death from tuberculosis at the age of 45.
But, he comments: Connie remembered the last night she had spent with [Mellors], and shivered.