Jaykumar's Reviews > The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock and Other Poems

The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock and Other Poems by T.S. Eliot
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Nov 08, 11

Read in August, 2010

** spoiler alert ** I have loathed Prufrock whom i called 'a prude in a frock' and i understood almost everything he said. such contradictions!

a similar situation of commitment-phobia is apparent in his egoistic, self-conscious, passive, pessimistic attitude about life. he is educated and to him the post-war world and the evenings in it are 'spread out against the sky/ Like a patient etherised upon a table'.

he has a knack for amazing descriptions of ordinary places like the streets, cheap hotels, and the cat-like nature of the yellow evening fog, and his attentiveness or the lack of it are revealed when he states: 'In the room the women come and go/ Talking of Michelangelo.'

Prufrock, whether an internal monologue or a dramatic monologue, is a by-product of the war ravaged human psyche. uncertainty, indecisiveness, isolation, loneliness and faithlessness - all gain prominence with the flow the narrative.

one wonders if Prufrock shall ever believe in 'Carpe diem' and learn to live instead of merely considering the consequences of the decisions which he has yet to make.

Eliot's vast use of allusions display his learned aptitude but is he, like Prufrock, attempting to alienate his readers/viewers?
the techniques used by the poet are par excellence and show his brilliance at the craft - allusions/ inter-textuality(as stated before), symbolism, stream-of-consciousness, et al are a part of this poetry.

Eliot has given the world the true picture of the urban mind in its, disillusioned, solitary, perplexed state - helping us, the readers, understand the state of the world and its inhabitants after the destructive wars.

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