Perhaps; but the supposition that he's giving vent to his inner Dante here is a little conclusory. Possibly correct, even apparently so, when the entire corpus of his work is considered. But, while there's no question he was already strongly influenced by Dante when he wrote Prufrock (obviously), wasn't he also strongly influenced by the French Symbolists by that time?
Even if Dante used sex only as a literary device to describe the immediate nature of the devine (which I don't agree with, for what that's worth), surely the Symbolists saw it not only as a symbol, but as a vital part of life (or death-in-life, or whatever.) Or am I wrong about that: I'm no expert on them.
In a message dated 4/2/2003 5:54:27 PM Eastern Standard Time, [log in to unmask] writes:
>In a message dated 4/2/03 2:42:39 PM Pacific Standard Time, [log in to unmask]
>> Well, it seems to me if it's about a fear of "generative action", then sex
>> is more than just a literary device.
>But Eliot is writing from the School of Dante where sex very much is a
>literary device used to describe the immedicate nature of the divine.