A hit sir, a palpable hit!!! ;->
That old pedastel just won't let go of its honoured guest.
He's on there with crazy glue, to stay.
Lay on MacDuff.
Quoting Ken Armstrong <[log in to unmask]>:
> Quite an article in the new Essays in Criticism on Lawrence Rainey's
> unreliable handling, in all respects, of The Waste Land. By one J. McCue. A
> couple of samples:
> "Whatever the audience, it is an editor's first duty to present a reliable
> text. Yet whether in the poem itself or in Eliot's notes, in the supporting
> material from his journalism or in the editorial apparatus, Rainey fails to
> print the right words. Eliot did not write 'A poet like Donne, or like
> Baudelaire or Laforgue, may also be considered the inventor of an attitude'
> (p. 146); he wrote 'may almost be considered the inventor of an attitude'.
> He did not write 'But the effect of the portraits of Dryden is to turn the
> object into something greater' (p. 177); he wrote 'is to transform the
> object into something greater'. He did not write 'I can say nothing about
> either of the two new ballets' (p. 184); he wrote 'either of the new
> ballets'. He did not write 'He has his favourites, and they are chosen by
> his emotion rather than design' (p. 185); he wrote 'and these are chosen'.
> He did not write 'Mr. Strachey never seems to impose himself, he never
> drives towards a theory' (p. 186); he wrote 'he never drives a hint towards
> a theory'. He did not write 'the poets of the seventeenth century (up to
> the Revolution) were the direct and natural development of the precedent
> age' (p. 196); he wrote 'direct and normal development'. He did not write
> 'if we are to judge of styles of poetry by their abuse, examples may be
> found in Cleveland to justify Johnson's condemnation' (p. 194); he wrote
> 'enough examples'.
> Enough examples to justify condemnation? Clearly, and these all come from
> the sixty-five pages of 'Eliot's Contemporary Prose'. Failures in
> transcription continue throughout the book. As well as in Eliot's prose and
> poetry, English and French, there are errors in quotations from Augustine,
> Baudelaire, the Bible, Catullus, John Day, Dryden, Gautier, Goldsmith,
> Hazlitt, Hesse, Henry King, Kyd, Marvell, Milton, Gérard de Nerval, Poe,
> Sappho, Shakespeare, Spenser, Tennyson, Verlaine and Webster. Almost
> anywhere the reader stops to compare a quotation with its original, he will
> find something wrong with it, and these failings are especially damaging
> because The Waste Land makes so much of quotation and misquotation. It may
> be a poem about the loss of cultural memory, but an editor need not
> demonstrate by example."
> Rainey even publishes (and copyrights!) the poem as _Waste Land_. No "The"
> for this latter day revision.
> A close readings go, McCue's article reveals more than a near miss. Or
> less. It seems clear that the what moves Rainey in his Eliot criticism, as
> with not a few others, is his dislike of Eliot.
> "Eliot could scarcely have been more prescient about The Waste Land and the
> change of perspective it effected. As if to confirm his continued adherence
> to this highly original and immensely influential vision of tradition, he
> quoted it soon after The Waste Land, at the beginning of 'The Function of
> Criticism' in 1923. Rainey sceptically comments that the writings of 1921
> could be called classicist 'only by a remarkable extension of the term',
> without realising that this extension is precisely what Eliot achieved.
> What is so new about The Waste Land is the way it makes use of the old.
> Yet Rainey thinks Eliot was fiddling the record when, 'perhaps innocently',
> he misdated 'Tradition and the Individual Talent' to 1917 (rather than
> 1919) and made it 'the gateway into that vast graveyard known as his
> Selected Essays'. Since the running order of Selected Essays was explicitly
> non-chronological (and its earliest essay is from 1919 anyway), the
> suspicion is unwarranted,"
> Well, these are only snippets. But it doesn't get better.
> Ken A.
> Ken A.