There's the old (Elizabethan? E. was really into Elizabethan in those days),
reference to sexual consummation as a little death. Put that together
with a Freudian planting (whoever PLANTED a corpse?) in a garden,
and what sprouts?
A consummation devoutly to be witched?
----- Original Message -----
From: "Nancy Gish" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Tuesday, June 05, 2007 5:33 PM
Subject: "Overall context" was The Yoruba and TSE
> I don't know what the Yoruba still have to do with this, but the issue
> seems to be the same problem of unity or non-unity of The Waste Land
> that has been in question since 1922. Regardless of how one reads it,
> it is not simply a given that there is any resolution, any "whole," or
> any continuity of lust as the only problem. These are all topics for
> analysis rather than facts, and there is not agreement on them.
> For example, I do not see any implication of lust at all in the specific
> image of Stetson unless the murder is taken as a sexual-sadistic one, a
> view for which I do not see any language in the text. Where is it if
> you see it?
> And the ending sticks "Shantih" immediately after a collapse of language
> and an allusion to Hieronimo, who used a play in several languages to
> constuct a murder of all the players, though he was not mad at the time.
> I do not see how this resolves even a theme of murder.
> Please explain.
> >>> cr mittal <[log in to unmask]> 06/05/07 7:12 PM >>>
> One may not agree here -- in Eliot's case, at least. There's hardly
> a passage in TWL that doesn't reverberate with the thematic leitmotif
> of the work as a whole -- ramifications of lust and the way through
> the impasse. The poem opens on a note of "breeding/Lilacs" and
> closes neatly on a note of resolution that may usher in "Shantih",
> a freedom from this affliction that is responsible for the wasteland
> Carrol Cox <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> cr mittal wrote:
> > Thanks for your very valid questions, Marcia. As I said, it's just a
> > reading
> > of sorts. It's only in the overall context of the TWL that I view "the
> > corpse"
> > and associate it with an act of savagery/lust/violence, an act of
> > guilt/sin.
> You can't do that. The "overall context" has no existence except in the
> local passages. It's an old hermeneutic principle that makes a lot of
> sense: In construing a local passage, _first_ make sense of it in
> isolation. There are of course difficulties here: It's called the
> Hermeneutic Circle. But not honoring those difficulties leads to utter
> nonsense. Anyone can make a text mean anything they want it to mean --
> but then others have no recourse but just ignore the resulting
> construals as not contributing to any useful conversation.
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