T. S. Eliot

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Essay T. S. Eliot

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Examines the life and works of this 20th century poet.

This paper traces the life of T.S. Eliot from his birth in St. Louis through his Harvard education and his move to England to marry Vivien Haigh-Wood. It examines the progress of his poetic career from the 1917 publication of his first book of poetry, “Prufrock and Other Observations,” to the poem that made him one of the 20th century’s greatest poets, The Wasteland. The paper focuses on this poem and shows how it has been deciphered and analyzed for decades and is considered one of the most impressive works of poetry of all time. The paper examines how events in Eliot’s life influenced the writing of “The Wasteland”.
Eliot converted to the Anglican Church in 1926, and had taken a vow of celibacy even before his separation from Vivien, and from that point on became even more guarded and remote, spending his time on his career and religion, while his poems became even more mystical (Pettingell pg). Many have speculated through the years that Eliot had homosexual inclinations that even one moment’s temptation might have sent him into a lifelong state of guilt, however, Gordon writes that Eliot secretly loved a woman he had known since his Harvard days named Emily Hale (Pettingell pg).”

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