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Peter Montgomery wrote:
>
> Given Eliot's New England background, and the preesence of
> New Englanders on the list, ...


This New Englander has a thought -- Could Eliot possibly
have been on bad acid when he was writing of Celia's death
in "The Cocktail Party?"  ;-)


http://books.guardian.co.uk/reviews/biography/0,6121,585528,00.html

    Anyone who studies American writing is bound to notice the ingrained
    sense of evil to which writers such as Melville, Hawthorne, James and
    Frost are so intimately attuned. Frost wrote a poem about an ancestor
    who was a noted Indian-killer, while Eliot identified with
    17th-century New England witchfinders. "I can't help it," he told
    Pound. "My great-grandfather was on the same witch jury as Nat
    Hawthorne's great-grandfather, and I just naturally smell out witches
    etc."


Elsewhere Carole Seymour-Jones cites the quote as a letter from
    TSE to Ezra Pound, 10 December, 1933  Beinecke
[Beinecke Library at Yale University]

Regards,
    Rick Parker







Peter Montgomery wrote:
>
> Given Eliot's New England background, and the preesence of
> New Englanders on the list, I am hoping there will be a response
> to a broadening of the focus beyond the normal limits of the list.
>
> There was a program on PBS about the Salem Witches and how they
> may have been victims of a fungus, ergot (amazing the closeness to
> argot!!!), which contains lysurgic acid, a psychotrope
> (connected to lsd ?). It seems there is evidence that the same
> fungus has been found in places in Europe where similar manifes-
> tations have happened.
>
> Anyt thoughts about this? Obviously it connects to
> Hawthorne and Miller. Dare one connect it to THE COCKTAIL PARTY?
>
> Peter