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Ironically, had he been a better person, he might have been a lesser poet;  his poetry seems to come from his own extreme personality and its complexities and ambiguities. 
 
I just find it self-contradictory to be outraged at any discussion of Eliot the man when Eliot the man had no compunctions about discussing Lawrence the man or Yeats the man or Hardy the man or George Eliot the woman or anyone else he decided to attack.
Nancy
 
 
>>> Diana Manister <[log in to unmask]>08/16/09 9:50 AM >>>
Nancy,
 
Why has no one but you ever mentioned that? That's spot-on!
 
What a hypocrite TSE was, besides being a witch hunter!
 
How pleasant it would have been if Mr. Eliot had been a more admirable person as well as a great poet!
 
Well we can't have everything.
 
Diana
 

Date: Sun, 16 Aug 2009 02:07:58 -0400
From: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: Eliot's Suppressed Lecture
To: [log in to unmask]

I'm glad you put this on.  But I wish I had figured out earlier that this was one of the published lectures.  Somehow I got the idea from the first post that it was (as in "suppressed") not one of the three in the original book.
 
Last year I found (at an excessive cost but worth it) an actual copy of After Strange Gods--in, of all places, a small bookshop in Wiscasset, Maine.  It was the only one then I could find anywhere on the internet.  So of course I got it.  I reread the third lecture just now, and what strikes me, apart from its meanspiritedness, is the personalizing he feels no hesitation to use.  We are constantly hearing on this list and elsewhere that TSE himself was somehow not to be discussed as a person ever, and his "impersonal theory of poetry" was somehow beyond question, yet his own writing is viciously personal here--not as an aid to interpretation but as an attack on writers he judges as not acceptable in themselves.
 
How is one supposed to address that?
Nancy
>>> Tom Colket 08/16/09 12:56 AM >>>
> T. S. Eliot’s Suppressed Lecture . .
> Eliot withdrew After Strange Gods from publication,
> and it has remained unavailable ever since.
 
That is, it "remained unavailable " until the Internet came along. Eliot's "After Strange Gods" lectures, including the one with the phrase "free-thinking Jews", is on-line and available for a free download. It was digitized by the University of Toronto in 2007 and is listed as "not in copyright".
 
Try:
 
http://www.archive.org/details/afterstrangegods00eliouoft
 
 
-- Tom --
 

Date: Wed, 12 Aug 2009 16:40:13 +0000
From: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Eliot's Suppressed Lecture
To: [log in to unmask]

Dear Marcia, I am a VQR subscriber, but I was able to access the articles before logging in. Try googling VQR and clicking on the link there. Diana

 

T. S. Eliot’s Suppressed Lecture

T. S. Eliot’s Suppressed LectureIn May 1933, T. S. Eliot delivered three lectures at the University of Virginia, as part of the Page-Barbour Series. By Eliot’s own description, these lectures were intended as “further development of the problem which the author first discussed in his essay, ‘Tradition and the Individual Talent.’” A number of critics have also noted the fact that Eliot had recently separated from his wife Vivien, and without her steadying hand, these lectures reveal his complete transformation from aesthete to self-described “moralist.”
 
However, the lectures, gathered in Spring 1934 as the slim volume After Strange Gods, have gained most of their notorious reputation, because they contain some of the strongest evidence of Eliot’s intolerance for non-Christian religions and his blatant anti-Semitism. At one point, he declared that, “The population should be homogeneous; where two or more cultures exist in the same place they are likely either to be fiercely self-conscious or both to become adulterate. What is still more important is unity of religious background; and reasons of race and religion combine to make any large number of free-thinking Jews undesirable.” The same spring that Eliot delivered those fateful words, the young poet Karl Shapiro, who had entered the University the previous September, decided to leave Virginia, citing its implicit anti-Semitism. In his poem, “University,” Shapiro charged: “To hurt the Negro and avoid the Jew / Is the curriculum.” Barely a decade later, Shapiro received the Pulitzer Prize for his poems about his World War II service, and Eliot had grown leery of having his remarks published in post-Nazi Europe. Eliot withdrew After Strange Gods from publication, and it has remained unavailable ever since.  

However, one of the lectures, “Personality and Demonic Possession,” appeared in VQR in January 1934 (and was followed in April 1934 by the poem “Words for Music”—later expanded into “Landscapes”). The following essay is decidedly the least incendiary of the three Eliot delivered at Virginia; however, even here it is clear the degree to which his dogmatic artistic beliefs have blurred into social intolerance. We are grateful to the Eliot estate for generously allowing us to reprint the piece in our 75th anniversary essay anthology, We Write for Our Own Time, edited by Alexander Burnham. That collection remains the only in-print source for any of Eliot’s Page-Barbour lectures. Now Eliot’s original typescript, from which the printed version was prepared, appears here for the first time ever.

 

“Personality and Demonic Possession” © Copyright Valerie Eliot, appears by permission of Faber and Faber. The typescript appears courtesy of the Special Collections at Alderman Library, University of Virginia.

 


Date: Wed, 12 Aug 2009 11:07:55 -0400
From: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: Dynamo, Flanagan, and that "third scene" from Sweeney Agonistes
To: [log in to unmask]

Dear Diana,
    What, please, is the name of the essay?  (The site is for paid subscribers only.)

Best,
Marcia

Diana Manister wrote:
[log in to unmask]> Dear Rick,
 
No doubt you are familiar with the facsmile of Eliot's suppressed essay on personality and demonic possession. On page four he discusses human violence explicitly:
 
http://www.vqronline.org/viewmedia.php/prmMID/8911
 


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