"The Love Song Of J. Alfred Prufrock": Surrealism And T.S. Eliot



Surrealism is a dangerous word to use about the poet, playwright
and critic T.S. Eliot, and certainly with his first major work, "The Love
Song of J. Alfred Prufrock ". Eliot wrote the poem, after all, years before
Andre Breton and his compatriots began defining and practicing "surrealism"
proper. Andre Breton published his first "Manifesto of Surrealism" in 1924,
seven years after Eliot's publication of "The Love Song of J. Alfred
Prufrock". It was this manifesto which defined the movement in
philosophical and psychological terms. Moreover, Eliot would later show
indifference, incomprehension and at times hostility toward surrealism and
its precursor Dada.
Eliot's favourites among his ...

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to transcend logic and habitual
thinking, to reveal deeper levels of meaning and of unconscious
associations. Although scholars might not classify Eliot as a Surrealist,
the surreal landscape, defined as "an attempt to express the workings of
the subconscious mind by images without order, as in a dream " is
exemplified in "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock."
"Prufrock presents a symbolic landscape where the meaning emerges
from the mutual interaction of the images, and that meaning is enlarged by
echoes, often heroic," of other writers.
The juxtapositions mentioned earlier are evident even at the
poem's opening, which begins on a rather sombre note, with a nightmarish
passage from Dante's Inferno. The main character, Guido de Montefeltro,
confesses his sins to Dante, assuming that "none has ever returned alive
from this depth"; this "depth" being Hell. As the reader has never
experienced death and the passage through the Underworld, he must rely on
his own ...

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""The Love Song Of J. Alfred Prufrock": Surrealism And T.S. Eliot." Essayworld.com. November 5, 2008. Accessed November 25, 2017. http://www.essayworld.com/essays/Love-Song-J-Alfred-Prufrock-Surrealism/92565.
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PAPER DETAILS
Added: 11/5/2008 10:38:47 AM
Category: Poetry & Poets
Type: Premium Paper
Words: 906
Pages: 4

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