ENG Lecture – September 27 th
Trench poetry (war poetry)
1920 Eliot published a poem about an old man sitting alone in an empty house and
asked himself “after such knowledge, what forgiveness?” (What the wasteland is
trying to answer)
No single view in the Wasteland, no one single voice. Each voice is reflecting and
refracting the other. The Wasteland doesn’t come to life until you put your own
meaning into the words. Eliot tended to write in bits and pieces as they occurred to
him and then assembled them into a mound or not.
If we perceive the world to be meaningful, then we will perceive the art we observe
as meaningful. But if we view the world as chaotic, we will see chaos in the art we
Wasteland inspires to be accessible and reach everyone. Eliot thought the way to
write real poetry was to strive for the ‘continual extinction of feeling’. If you
suppress your own emotion then your poem can become accessible to your readers.
Wasteland tries to represent an inclusive human consciousness.
All of the fragments in the Wasteland need something to hold them together, Eliot
hoped that there might be some order between individual human expe