In the film Spiderman 2 ( 2004 ) , Peter Parker, aka Spiderman, gets in to a conversation with Dr. Otto Octavious, the scientist, who subsequently morphs into the ace scoundrel Doc Ock. Dr. Octavious Tells Peter about his fiancee, a literature pupil, when they met in college and how she attempted to larn scientific discipline for his interest and how he tried to larn literature for hers. She was more successful and he less, as he explains to Peter, “ She was analyzing T.S. Eliot, and, compared to science, Eliot is really complicated ” ( Murphy ) . A similar perplexity ( or bias, for that affair ) dovetails literary scholarship on Eliot, more specifically in relation to The Waste Land. This paper is non an effort to do things easier or to find a synoptically consistent logic behind The Waste Land. Such an effort would be partly successful, but the chief accent of this paper is to find and reason for some markers or critical attacks that dissect the structural anatomy of the verse form.
The main motivation for such an effort is to detect critical attacks that can be applied to the whole verse form to earn different readings of the verse form. Eliot ‘s attempts in the verse form have laid much of the accent on the act of reading, and instead than the complexnesss of the verse form that conjure to ebb reader involvement ( as immediate reappraisals of the verse form suggested ) , I argue that the verse form, in its disconnected ego, is able to take the reader deeper into the poetic experience. The first attack is instead theoretical, based chiefly on the thought of historical sense that Eliot emphasised in his essay Tradition and the Individual Talent. The 2nd attack is chiefly structural, based on the thought of deducing intending between the experiences of authorship and reading. Outlaying these attacks, it is deserving adverting that there have been legion cases in the research where these attacks have overlapped, with positive consequences that have eased the analysis.
The Waste Land, in my foremost statement, is a catalytic entity. This simple derivation, of class, draws from Eliot ‘s modern-day times and the societal aura after the Great War. But other than that, in composing the lines of the verse form, Eliot has stressed upon the cyclic nature of historical events that an single must see in her/ his life-time. The grounds for such a claim may be drawn from the verse form. First, allow us see the abstract nature of the verse form ; 2nd, the broken fragments and 3rd, the equivocal and frequently altering points of narrative. All, in their blazing manner defy a additive comprehension of the verse form. This would propose that the procedure of composing involved an impersonal idea procedure that stressed more on the thoughts of abstract feelings instead than a personal purpose of look. The response to such a method of composing would non be “ what is the poet stating? ” but “ what is the verse form stating? ” . More significance can be derived from replying the later inquiry than seeking to bracket the verse form within conventional grounds of composing poesy. Hence, it becomes clear that the procedure of creative activity, on Eliot ‘s portion, is purely catalytic, non pulling merely on modern-day history, but pulling from a ‘tradition ‘ of historic rhythms that have enriched the modern-day mind.
These conform closely to Eliot ‘s claims in theory in the essay Tradition and the Individual Talent. The same statement can be farther elaborated if we consider these lines from The Waste Land:
“ Jerusalem Athens Alexandria
Unreal ” ( 374- 376, From What the Thunder Said ) .
The symbols of fallen civilizations and falling civilizations come together in the infinite of two lines to show Eliot ‘s feelings in the third- “ Unreal ” . It is a procedure of distilling history and clip within the infinite of a individual mention to convey a remarkable feeling amongst a montage of looks. The thought is to emphasize on the narrowness of the separation of ‘tradition ‘ ( in my statement ‘history ‘ ) and the “ adult male who suffers ” – or the life poet with a to the full rounded personality ( Eliot ) . The vault of intending that lines similar to the above quoted lines in The Waste Land carry are because of the adept narrowness of this separation from tradition ( history ) that Eliot strives to accomplish. Any creative activity of poesy, as he stresses, is an add-on to the tradition in a dynamic relationship, and hence, the same tradition ( and history ) act as the bare castanetss of The Waste Land. For the comprehension of significance, this posit of structural anatomy of the verse form, as I argue, is the primary stepping rock.
From this theoretical base point, it is now possible to manage the structural statements refering The Waste Land in a directional position. In the old statement, the keywords to the statement were tradition and history. In turn uping The Waste Land in the modernist environment a similar historical position is ineluctable, but this statement largely concerns itself with sociological forms. In analyzing the disconnected construction of the verse form, the general concern is necessarily the broken or endangered topic of European civilization exposed to devastation after the First World War, and it should be so. From this same platform, if this analysis were to delve farther in to each fragment of event in the verse form and non needfully the five defined parts of the verse form, the job of narrative would halt at one point: socio- psychological atomization of the single topic. This statement is debatable for the simple ground that by turn uping the said atomization in the ‘individual topic ‘ , it brings into inquiry the auctorial voice of all the 434 lines every bit good as the remarkable voices of narrating characters inside the assorted fragments of the verse form ( and non merely the demarcated five parts, henceforward intending the same ) . The solution would be to get down with a broader spectrum and contract down to the two sets of ‘individual topic ‘ .
To state that structurally the verse form is determined by a common socio- psychological atomization is to get down with the modern sociological theory of atomization that states three phenomena of atomization ( Keunen ) . First, a division of the societal field in assorted subsystems, besides called ‘functional distinction ‘ , 2nd ; the increasing tensenesss with moral discourse straight related to functional distinction, and 3rd ; the atomization of the subjective ( self- ) perceptual experience. In instance of Eliot, as we have seen in the first statement, the principal concern is with history and tradition, and therefore I infer a concern with civilization, the medium of historical heritage. Powered with this background, the statement is simple: in the commoditised modernist minute, money flowed easier than civilization and for Eliot and his conservative historicity, it was a baleful minute. Relatively, it was besides a pandemonium of feelings and interactions that could easy take to the atomization of experience. This is non to propose that The Waste Land is wholly a reactionist poetic creative activity, instead it is to propose ( as Keunen points out in relation to the modernist novel ) that for Eliot such an experience evaluated to cultural pessimism and utmost conservative reaction hovering between utopia and desperation ( Keunen ) . The consequence is the metempsychosis and Resurrection of decay in the verse form, from anticipating a cadaver to shoot ( line 71- 72, from The Burial of the Dead ) to the rat ‘s back street where the dead work forces lost their castanetss ( lines 115- 116, from A Game of Chess ) . The statement, hence, tries to get at a valid decision to explicate the disconnected nature of the verse form and postulates that the fragments be analysed as fragments and non as a complete whole.
As for the single topics of the fragments of the verse form, Eliot ‘s concern is subjected to the places of narrative within the construction of the verse form. The general concern of the larger cultural and societal pandemonium is sublimated in the signifiers of subjective memory that is someway unqualified to come to footings with the functional distinction. In the construction of the verse form, this is expressed in the word picture of gender ( lines 222- 256, from The Fire Sermon ) , neurasthenia ( lines 111- 134, from A Game of Chess ) , nostalgia ( lines 8- 18, from The Burial of the Dead ) and the socially apparent quandary of category ( lines 77- 107 and lines 139- 172, from A Game of Chess ) . In all four cases ( and many more ) the finding factor that promises significance is the map and usage of memory. Each in their subjective manner tells a different narrative, but each is derived from the modern experience. This is an experience that does non assure significance as a incorporate whole, but when dealt with abstractly, has a significance of its ain, in its ain right and context. The map of memory is to warrant its presence in the verse form as a whole, or such experiences would be lost in the pandemonium of societal atomization.
Structurally, hence, the map of the socio- psychological atomization serves the intent of Eliot ‘s purpose. He provides a poetic merchandise of his times but non confined to the contexts of his clip entirely, he draws from a history yesteryear and modern-day but avoids major conformations of historical philistinism. The disposed decision for this statement can be derived from one of Eliot ‘s ain theories sing the societal map of poesy, one that deals with the map of history from a ulterior work, The Social Function of Poetry ( 1945 ) . There, he expounds the thought that the “ poet ‘s existent protagonism of or assail on a peculiar societal attitude can non represent poesy ‘s societal map for the obvious and simple ground that the poesy remains to be of some value to humanity long after the specific societal causes that may hold inspired it-if, for that affair, there go on to hold been any-have rather literally go lost to history. ” ( T. Eliot )
The nature scholarship related to The Waste Land since 1922 have served to ease the procedure ( or perplex farther! ) of geting at a consensus of significance. The cardinal job has been the break in the flow of information defying absolute additive outline, in the words of a critic, “ the modernist work stymies the readerly impulse to clean up up loose terminals ” ( McDonald ) . I argue that for The Waste Land there are no loose terminals. The old statements refering atomization and pulling on a tradition of history and literature by virtuousness of intertextuality at least turn out that each fragment has a presence of its ain in the verse form. A point in concern in the thesis of this paper has been the imbrication of the analysis of the two cardinal statements for positive consequences. The convergence is best described in these undermentioned footings: a few fragments could be added before the first published version of the verse form ( 1922 ) , or in the center of the verse form or at the terminal or at any other point in the verse form without restricting the construction of the verse form, or the tradition cradling the verse form or the derivational significances of the verse form.
This is a debatable statement to do because it brings into inquiry the really nature and being of a work of art. The statement can be sustained, nevertheless by borrowing an component of analysis straight out of Saussure ‘s theory of the duality of linguistic communication in such a manner that both the nature and being of the verse form can be sustained in the visible radiation of the present statement. Saussure described linguistic communication based on a ‘syntagmatic ‘ relationship ( Ferdinand de Saussure ( Trans. W.Baskin ) ) , where each mark contributes something to the significance as a whole and each contrasting with all other marks in the linguistic communication. To this syntagmatic relationship, marks could be added to accommodate convenience. Over and above this relationship, there is present the ‘paradigmatic ‘ relationship ( Ferdinand de Saussure ( Trans. W.Baskin ) ) , where sub- sets of marks could be substituted in topographic point of the outstanding marks of the syntagmatic construction. In The Waste Land, it has already been established that single fragments exist in the freedom of their ain significance, lending to the larger sequence of significance, but there is no additive synoptic significance as a whole or one unit of significance. Hence, borrowing from Saussure ‘s theory, it is possible to reason that fragments could be added to the original verse form ( 1922 ) without restricting the construction of the verse form or the tradition behind it. The same can barely be said of canceling any fragment from the verse form for the obvious ground that each published fragment ( and non the demarcated five ) serves some intent in the single significance and the complete sequence of significance. Editorial intercession, most famously that of Ezra Pound ‘s has already curtailed the original composing and for the interest of the published one, the lesser said the better.
For his ain poetical record, the thought of historical sense that he propagated in the essay Tradition and the Individual Talent is self apparent in the verse form. Every complete piece of good literature would be an add-on to the extremum of tradition ( T. S. Eliot ) . What this essay proves is that alternatively of trying intending derivation in the additive manner, which is non ever possible for The Waste Land, it is however a meaningful experience of reading in the disconnected whole of the verse form. The critical attacks, specifically the thought of tradition and an penetration into the structural anatomy of the verse form serve the intent giving way to nearing the verse form with certain tools in the act of reading. The key to this method of analysis has been the importance of ‘readerly ‘ consciousness that Eliot has stressed in his legion other critical plants and what Eliot demands of it. In his composing of The Waste Land Eliot digs up the ‘buried castanetss ‘ of the dead work forces and finds more, does more. It is for the critic to delve up those castanetss, a procedure of delving that might perchance ne’er terminal. The excavation, at least, serves as a pace stick for understanding and deducing intending out of The Waste Land.