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Tansha Farjana Hasnat
13 Apr 2014
Modernism in Eliot's Poetry
According to English novelist Virginia Woolf human nature underwent a fundamental change on or about early twentieth century. And the term modernism refers to the same fundamental shift in art, coulter, literature, style of living, etc. of before and after World War One period. This change may be characterized by a self-conscious break in writing traditional poetry. Modern writer's conscious desire was to overturn the traditional style and to represent the sensibilities of that period. This consciousness reflects in each and every line of Eliot's poetry as well as his contemporaries. Eliot depicts Prufrock in the poem "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" as a confused person who is not very much certain about the answer of his female friend. She should say, "That is not what I meant at all.
/ That is not at all." (97-8), whereas he has planed to propose his mate, he wastes his time talking irrelevant matters:
For I have known them all already, known them all-
Have known the evening, morning, afternoons,
I have measured out my life with coffee spoons;
I know the voices dying with a dying fall
Beneath the music from a further room.
So how should I presume? (49-54)
This is also noticeable that World War One has empowered the women of that time; men left them behind- alone, helpless; and they need to survive in this hard world. The war made them independent to live and think women were talking about those things, going places that were unreachable or almost forbidden for them. For example, they were in and out talking about "Michelangelo"(14) an artist: women were showing interest in art and other things.