Cover image for The waste land; a facsimile and transcript of the original drafts including the annotations of Ezra Pound.
Title:
The waste land; a facsimile and transcript of the original drafts including the annotations of Ezra Pound.
Author:
Eliot, T. S. (Thomas Stearns), 1888-1965.
Publication Information:
New York : Harcourt Brace Jovanovich [1971]
Physical Description:
xxx, 149 pages : facsimiles ; 29 cm
General Note:
Poem.
Language:
English
ISBN:
9780151947607
Format :
Book

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PS3509.L43 W3 1971 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Oversize Non-Circ
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Summary

Summary

Each facsimile page of the original manuscript is accompanied here by a typeset transcript on the facing page. This book shows how the original, which was much longer than the first published version, was edited through handwritten notes by Ezra Pound, by Eliot's first wife, and by Eliot himself. Edited and with an Introduction by Valerie Eliot; Preface by Ezra Pound.


Author Notes

T. S. Eliot is considered by many to be a literary genius and one of the most influential men of letters during the half-century after World War I. He was born on September 26, 1888, in St. Louis, Missouri. Eliot attended Harvard University, with time abroad pursuing graduate studies at the Sorbonne, Marburg, and Oxford. The outbreak of World War I prevented his return to the United States, and, persuaded by Ezra Pound to remain in England, he decided to settle there permanently.

He published his influential early criticism, much of it written as occasional pieces for literary periodicals. He developed such doctrines as the "dissociation of sensibility" and the "objective correlative" and elaborated his views on wit and on the relation of tradition to the individual talent. Eliot by this time had left his early, derivative verse far behind and had begun to publish avant-garde poetry (including "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" (1915), which exploited fresh rhythms, abrupt juxtapositions, contemporary subject matter, and witty allusion. This period of creativity also resulted in another collection of verse (including "Gerontian") and culminated in The Waste Land, a masterpiece published in 1922 and produced partly during a period of psychological breakdown while married to his wife, Vivienne Haigh-Wood Eliot.

In 1922, Eliot became a director of the Faber & Faber publishing house, and in 1927 he became a British citizen and joined the Church of England. Thereafter, his career underwent a change. With the publication of Ash Wednesday in 1930, his poetry became more overtly Christian. As editor of the influential literary magazine The Criterion, he turned his hand to social as well as literary criticism, with an increasingly conservative orientation. His religious poetry culminated in Four Quartets, published individually from 1936 onward and collectively in 1943. This work is often considered to be his greatest poetic achievement. Eliot also wrote poetry in a much lighter vein, such as Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats (1939), a collection that was used during the early 1980s as the basis for the musical, Cats.

In addition to his contributions in poetry and criticism, Eliot is the pivotal verse dramatist of this century. He followed the lead of William Butler Yeats in attempting to revive metrical language in the theater. But, unlike Yeats, Eliot wanted a dramatic verse that would be self-effacing, capable of expressing the most prosaic passages in a play, and an insistent, undetected presence capable of elevating itself at a moment's notice. His progression from the pageant The Rock (1934) and Murder in the Cathedral (1935), written for the Canterbury Festival, through The Family Reunion (1939) and The Cocktail Party (1949), a West End hit, was thus a matter of neutralizing obvious poetic effects and bringing prose passages into the flow of verse.

Recent critics have seen Eliot as a divided figure, covertly attracted to the very elements (romanticism, personality, heresy) he overtly condemned. His early attacks on romantic poets, for example, often reveal him as a romantic against the grain. The same divisions carry over into his verse, where violence struggles against restraint, emotion against order, and imagination against ironic detachment. This Eliot is more human and more attractive to contemporary taste. During his lifetime, Eliot received many honors and awards, including the Nobel Prize for literature in 1948.

(Bowker Author Biography)


Reviews 1

Library Journal Review

Written when Eliot was working as a bank clerk and heavily edited by his friend Ezra Pound, 1922's The Waste Land could probably take the prize as the most important English-language poem of the 20th century. This 75th-anniversary edition includes the full text plus notes and an afterword by scholar/editor Christopher Ricks. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Excerpts

Excerpts

Perhaps the most written-about long poem of the 20th century, T.S. Eliot's The Waste Land is a cornerstone of the modernist movement and deals with what was then viewed as the decline of civilization. Because of its changes of speaker, location, and time, as well as its numerous literary and cultural references, The Waste Land is often used in the classroom to exemplify how to explicate a poem. This title offers students an indispensable resource meant to deepen their appreciation of this seminal work by investigating its innovative use of language and imagery. Excerpted from The Waste Land by T. S. Eliot All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.