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In a message dated 7/22/01 8:22:09 PM Eastern Daylight Time, 
[log in to unmask] writes:


> Still, is there an "accepted" rationale or interpretation for line 202 of 
> "The Waste Land" being stolen, or expropriated, from Verlaine's poem and 
> kept in French rather translating it to English? If the poem is determined 
> to allude to something with that line, an English translation of the line 
> would maintain that allusion, wouldn't it? But keeping the line in French 
> allows for the pun "voix" to make that allusion more ambiguous, if not 
> humourous. Ambiguity certainly seems to be the lifeblood of "The Waste 
> Land."

Steve, 

If you're interested in Eliot's use of puns, word-play, jokes, and humor, you 
might be interested in the three volumes I'm doing on five of the early 
poems, including TWL. The first volume, T. S. Eliot's Bleistein Poems, is 
out, and although it includes some material on TWL, I'll not be doing a full 
analysis of TWL until volume 3. (I'm now working on volume 2). 

You might be able to find it in a library. You can read the introduction, 
table of contents, and first chapter at <A HREF="http://hometown.aol.com/patsloane/myhomepageindex.html">
http://hometown.aol.com/patsloane/myhomepageindex.html</A>

If you buy the book, I'd recommend the paperback rather than the hardcover 
edition, and that you buy it from the publisher rather than from amazon.com, 
as the publisher gives a 15% discount. The link to the publisher's web site 
is on the site above.

The site has copies of a number of my papers that were either published in 
journals or read at conferences. For your interests, the ones you might want 
to read are "Pun and Games" (Yeats Eliot Review) or "Notes and Observations 
on T. S. Eliot's Early Poems" (University of Missouri web page). 

I didn't see that about "voix." But it's a good observation on your part and 
I agree with you. There's a similar pun about "verses"and "voices" in Eliot's 
note to lines 31-34 of TWL. 

More generally, it seems to me that humor is a major element in Eliot's work, 
and even a major structural element.  One sees acknowledgements of Eliot's 
humor from time to time by Southam, Kenner, and Grover Smith. And there's 
been a lot written about his interest in vaudville, music hall, Elizabethan 
plays (which have a bawdy kind of humor), and Groucho Marx. But I think a lot 
of people have an aversion to pun, maybe because it doesn't fit their 
conception of what "serious poetry" ought to be. So I don't personally think 
it's ever gotten the attention it should have gotten in the Eliot lit. Maybe 
that will change in the future.

pat sloane







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<HTML><FONT FACE=arial,helvetica><FONT  SIZE=3 FAMILY="SANSSERIF" FACE="Arial Narrow" LANG="0"><B>In a message dated 7/22/01 8:22:09 PM Eastern Daylight Time, 
<BR>[log in to unmask] writes:
<BR>
<BR></FONT><FONT  COLOR="#000000" SIZE=2 FAMILY="SANSSERIF" FACE="Arial" LANG="0"></B>
<BR><BLOCKQUOTE TYPE=CITE style="BORDER-LEFT: #0000ff 2px solid; MARGIN-LEFT: 5px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 0px; PADDING-LEFT: 5px">Still, is there an "accepted" rationale or interpretation for line 202 of 
<BR>"The Waste Land" being stolen, or expropriated, from Verlaine's poem and 
<BR>kept in French rather translating it to English? If the poem is determined 
<BR>to allude to something with that line, an English translation of the line 
<BR>would maintain that allusion, wouldn't it? But keeping the line in French 
<BR>allows for the pun "voix" to make that allusion more ambiguous, if not 
<BR>humourous. Ambiguity certainly seems to be the lifeblood of "The Waste 
<BR>Land."</FONT><FONT  COLOR="#000000" SIZE=3 FAMILY="SANSSERIF" FACE="Arial" LANG="0"></BLOCKQUOTE>
<BR>
<BR>Steve, 
<BR>
<BR>If you're interested in Eliot's use of puns, word-play, jokes, and humor, you 
<BR>might be interested in the three volumes I'm doing on five of the early 
<BR>poems, including TWL. The first volume, <U>T. S. Eliot's Bleistein Poems</U>, is 
<BR>out, and although it includes some material on TWL, I'll not be doing a full 
<BR>analysis of TWL until volume 3. (I'm now working on volume 2). 
<BR>
<BR>You might be able to find it in a library. You can read the introduction, 
<BR>table of contents, and first chapter at <A HREF="http://hometown.aol.com/patsloane/myhomepageindex.html">
<BR>http://hometown.aol.com/patsloane/myhomepageindex.html</A>
<BR>
<BR>If you buy the book, I'd recommend the paperback rather than the hardcover 
<BR>edition, and that you buy it from the publisher rather than from amazon.com, 
<BR>as the publisher gives a 15% discount. The link to the publisher's web site 
<BR>is on the site above.
<BR>
<BR>The site has copies of a number of my papers that were either published in 
<BR>journals or read at conferences. For your interests, the ones you might want 
<BR>to read are "Pun and Games" (Yeats Eliot Review) or "Notes and Observations 
<BR>on T. S. Eliot's Early Poems" (University of Missouri web page). 
<BR>
<BR>I didn't see that about "voix." But it's a good observation on your part and 
<BR>I agree with you. There's a similar pun about "verses"and "voices" in Eliot's 
<BR>note to lines 31-34 of TWL. 
<BR>
<BR>More generally, it seems to me that humor is a major element in Eliot's work, 
<BR>and even a major structural element. &nbsp;One sees acknowledgements of Eliot's 
<BR>humor from time to time by Southam, Kenner, and Grover Smith. And there's 
<BR>been a lot written about his interest in vaudville, music hall, Elizabethan 
<BR>plays (which have a bawdy kind of humor), and Groucho Marx. But I think a lot 
<BR>of people have an aversion to pun, maybe because it doesn't fit their 
<BR>conception of what "serious poetry" ought to be. So I don't personally think 
<BR>it's ever gotten the attention it should have gotten in the Eliot lit. Maybe 
<BR>that will change in the future.
<BR>
<BR>pat sloane
<BR>
<BR>
<BR></FONT><FONT  COLOR="#000000" SIZE=2 FAMILY="SANSSERIF" FACE="Arial" LANG="0">
<BR></FONT><FONT  COLOR="#000000" SIZE=3 FAMILY="SANSSERIF" FACE="Arial" LANG="0">
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