Re 'Family Reunion', this struck a big chord, 'cos I've been revisiting a little book by a little-known northern english modern poet, Norman Nicholson, who, barely out of his 20s, published a far-ranging eng. lit. critucal work called 'Man and Literature'
Nicholson had been blown-away on first encountering Eliot's work; in case of interest. paste below his take from 60+ years ago on 'The Family Reunion' The Family Reunion, where it appears

among other themes. Before the play opened, Harry was married,

but his wife fell off the deck of a liner at sea and was drowned.

From that time he has been obsessed with the idea that he had

pushed her off, and his consciousness of guilt had followed him in

the shape of the Furies, the Eumenides. He flies from them all

over the world, but cannot escape them, and at last returns to his

home, hoping that he will find refuge in the surroundings of his

childhood. But the Eumenides pursue him even here. Among the

collection of uncles and aunts (a very dull lot from the dramatic

point of view) who are at the family house is Agatha, a spinster

and principal of a woman's college, who as a girl had been in love

with Harry's father and he with her. She tells Harry that just

before he was born his father had planned to murder his mother.

It becomes clear then that this is the beginning of the family curse

which has haunted Harry, and that the wish of his father had been

the cause of his obsession with a similar sin. He begins to see that

he may not have murdered his wife at all.............................


On 2 September 2011 10:08, Mikemail <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
I certainly appreciate Guinness's reading of TWL - this was a real inspiration to me in the 80's only equaled by the stage performance in London with Fox, Gough & Aitkens - some of the latter was also on VHS but no longer on U tube, I believe.
----- Original Message -----
From: [log in to unmask]" href="mailto:[log in to unmask]" target="_blank">Chokh Raj
To: [log in to unmask]" href="mailto:[log in to unmask]" target="_blank">[log in to unmask]
Sent: Friday, September 02, 2011 2:47 AM
Subject: Re: Poetry in 'The Family Reunion'

I don't think Guinness is enacting any character in the play. And if he is not doing that, he is not supposed to be reading the lines after any character. Apparently he has picked up lines from the play which appeal to him as poetry, and he renders them as as poetry after his own fashion. Taken independently of the play, I can visualize Eliot reading them in the selfsame manner.

From: Rickard A. Parker <[log in to unmask]>
To: [log in to unmask]
Sent: Thursday, September 1, 2011 7:13 PM
Subject: Re: Poetry in 'The Family Reunion'

I didn't like it much.  Guinness read it as if it were poetry.
He was supposed to read it like an ordinary person would speak
if ordinary people spoke poetry.

    Rick Parker

On 9/1/2011 1:53 PM, Chokh Raj wrote:
> There is poetry in the play.
> Sir Alec Guinness reads an excerpt from TS Eliot's verse play The Family
> Reunion:
> <>
> Enjoy, s'il vous plait.
> CR

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