Thanks a lot, Peter, for your lucid comments. You're right in remarking : "Maintaining the focus on the perceptions helps to make a further deeper perception possible, which is, how Eliot was setting about to shape perception itself." Reminds me of Herman Hesse's SIDHARTHA where the protagonist refuses to take for granted what has been told to him by the Buddha, but instead chooses to "experience" the path (laid down by Terry Eagleton !!! ) himself -- it's proceeding from perception to perception -- the flashes dawning like the light on kingfisher's wings -- oh, it seems like the blueprint of some mystical journey where one has to proceed from one revelation to another. Is that so ? Interesting ! But my foolish question still haunts me rather doggedly -- has someone articulated this experience of Eliot's poetry in terms of perceptions and deeper perceptions ? Any "footprints on the sands of time" so that one may read them and take heart ??? Regardful thanks, CR Peter Montgomery <[log in to unmask]> wrote: Let us not forget that Eagleton has simply extrapolated from Eliot's own thinking, in order to satisfy Eliot's own understanding of his approach to his work. Always the focus is on the work, and secondarily on Eliot's guidelines to maintaining the focus. Eaglton has simply evaporated some of the impeding steam. If one simply continues to look for the effects generated by the work, rather than any given meaning, one will get there. However, different effects will be generated by the same lines in different people. So there is the paradox. By registering the effects one experiences, the reader does have his or her own say in the discussion. Registering the effects as experiences, rather than meanings is where the skill needs to develop. Sticking with the senses, the perceptions, is the key. The discipline lies in resisting the temption to attribute meanings to the perceptions. Maintaining the focus on the perceptions helps to make a further deeper perception possible, which is, how Eliot was setting about to shape perception itself. A serious service is registered in laying that work bare. What was it Pound said to Eliot about going in front doors and backdoors? Cheers, P. ----- Original Message ----- From: cr mittal To: [log in to unmask] Sent: Friday, May 04, 2007 6:27 AM Subject: Re: "Raine's sterile thunder" Here are, then, the theoretical parameters of a sensible approach to Eliot, eliciting a unanimous applause from us. It makes me curious, though, to learn if the List can guide the reader/student to some criticism/analysis of Eliot's work that adheres to the norms laid down by Terry Eagleton. Or must the reader/student of Eliot sift and choose for himself/herself from a wide array of criticism -- as always ? CR Peter Montgomery <[log in to unmask]> wrote: Hence the contempt for certain strains of criticism and/or analysis. Love it. P. ----- Original Message ----- From: cr mittal To: [log in to unmask] Sent: Thursday, May 03, 2007 9:51 AM Subject: "Raine's sterile thunder" "Eliot's poetry is not a question of meaning in the first place. The meaning of a poem for Eliot was a fairly trifling matter. It was, he once remarked, like the piece of meat which the burglar throws to the guard dog to keep him occupied. In true symbolist fashion, Eliot was interested in what a poem did, not in what it said—in the resonance of the signifier, the echoes of its archetypes, the ghostly associations haunting its grains and textures, the stealthy, subliminal workings of its unconscious. Meaning was for the birds, or perhaps for the petit bourgeoisie. Eliot was a primitivist as well as a sophisticate, a writer who made guerrilla raids on the collective unconscious. For all his intellectualism, he was averse to rationality. Meaning in his poetry is like the mysterious figure who walks beside you in The Waste Land, vanishing when you look at it straight. When Raine enquires of a couple of lines in one of Eliot's poems whether we are supposed to be in a brothel, the only answer which would be true to Eliot's own aesthetic is that we are in a poem. " ~ Terry Eagleton http://www.prospect-magazine.co.uk/article_details.php?id=8312 CR --------------------------------- Ahhh...imagining that irresistible "new car" smell? Check out new cars at Yahoo! Autos. --------------------------------- No virus found in this incoming message. Checked by AVG Free Edition. Version: 7.5.467 / Virus Database: 269.6.2/784 - Release Date: 5/1/2007 2:57 PM --------------------------------- Need Mail bonding? Go to the Yahoo! Mail Q&A for great tips from Yahoo! Answers users. --------------------------------- No virus found in this incoming message. Checked by AVG Free Edition. Version: 7.5.467 / Virus Database: 269.6.2/787 - Release Date: 5/3/2007 2:11 PM --------------------------------- Be a PS3 game guru. Get your game face on with the latest PS3 news and previews at Yahoo! Games.