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"Incestuous" is one of the 50 words or so that are used when the writer is too lazy to think.  Mr. Montgomery rather over-uses _all_ the substitutes for thinking.

Carrol

> -----Original Message-----
> From: T. S. Eliot Discussion forum. [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On
> Behalf Of Nancy Gish
> Sent: Monday, January 07, 2013 5:17 PM
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: Re: Dantean Aesthetics in 'The Waste Land'
> 
> Well, it depends what is meant by "encouraging." I encourage everyone to
> read more poetry and more great literature of all kinds. That does not mean
> that it is encouraging to validate any statement, however unfounded. To do
> the latter is to lack respect for all those readers by treating them as unable to
> make distinctions and as expecting that anything anyone says is helpful or
> useful. I do not consider that either compassion or kindness, and I do not get
> the point of "incestuous" at all. There are so many Eliot scholars, it is difficult
> to find much of anything on which they agree in all ways except the
> importance of Eliot. We aren't in any danger of creating a small coterie who
> arbitrate.
> 
> One of the greatest pleasures of teaching is that my students, precisely
> because they come to poetry fresh, often see wonderful things I have not.
> But they are being taught to think about how those perceptions fit or do not
> into a reading and what that does for how we think about a text. They are
> not just randomly tossing out anything they imagine.
> 
> Whether Eliot was the major reason for 20th C interest in Dante or not is a
> historical question, one to be tested by historical evidence; it is not simply a
> personal opinion. And it is not even about original scholarship at all. As I
> noted, there are many books on Dante before that, so one would only need
> to read some, a form of research assumed at any level of study or reading
> before making pronouncements.
> 
> So as stated, I don't buy that.
> 
> According to Dominic Manganiello, when Eliot received the Dante gold medal
> in 1959, the Italian ambassador commended him "for restoring Dante to our
> contemporary consciousness and to the European tradition." He also notes
> that in the 19th C both Shelley and Matthew Arnold wrote on Dante:
> according to Shelley, Dante had displayed "the most glorious imagination of
> modern poetry."  He also points out, being a serious author, that "He [Eliot]
> has ruffled Dante scholars, who point out the limitations of his criticism,
> while others testify that his contribution to Dante studies surpasses that of
> Coleridge, Longfellow, and Norton"--in other words, Eliot's role is debated.
> And Manganiello also notes that Eliot "himself acknowledged in the Clark
> lectures [that one idea] derives from Santayana" and that "Santayana was
> one critic in the unbroken line of Dante scholarship at Harvard University."
> Those claims are part of a major book (T.S.Eliot and Dante, Macmillan, 1989)
> and one by an admirer but a very knowledgeable one, so readers here can
> follow up if they like. But its based in research, not just remarks.
> 
> There is no way offering such information is "incestuous" (whatever the
> sexual metaphor means); it is respecting the judgment of readers to consider
> alternatives and evidence.
> Nancy
> 
> 
> >>> P <[log in to unmask]> 01/07/13 4:20 PM >>>
> I'll buy that.
> P. M.
> 
> "[log in to unmask]" <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> 
> >I understand what Carrol is saying and I understand what Nancy has said
> about scholarship and, in my professional life, I live in a world where I often
> ask someone what is the basis for a statement he or she has just made; yet, I
> think encouraging everyone who reads poetry such as Eliot or Milton or
> Dante is something worth doing even if their opinions or pronouncements do
> not rise to the level of original scholarship.
> >
> >The alternative is incestuous.
> >
> >Eugene Schlanger
> >
> >Sent from my iPhone
> >
> >On Jan 6, 2013, at 1:05 PM, Carrol Cox <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> >
> >> I meant my note as a footnote to yours. The book I was referring to is
> _Dante & Philosophy_ by Etienne Gilson. He 'takes off' from a book by a
> Domincan who spins a huge web on a very little peg, as do p & cr on this list.
> Probably the footnotes to Dorothy Sayers's translation are a fine source of
> knowledge of Dante by those not Dante scholars. (She does slip-- e.g., in her
> notes to Paradise 2 she confuses Dante's emphasis on sense perception with
> positivist science.)
> >>
> >> You are fighting a hopeless battle with those who confuse texts informed
> by Christian belief with acts of worship. Eliot probably knew the difference
> between writing a poem and sitting in a pew.
> >>
> >> Carrol
> >>
> >>> -----Original Message-----
> >>> From: T. S. Eliot Discussion forum. [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On
> >>> Behalf Of Nancy Gish
> >>> Sent: Saturday, January 05, 2013 7:48 PM
> >>> To: [log in to unmask]
> >>> Subject: Re: Dantean Aesthetics in 'The Waste Land'
> >>>
> >>> I could ask the same question of you. How do you know it was just Eliot's
> >>> interest and not that Eliot also took up an interest others had expressed.
> It
> >>> would take research to find out. Anyway, as of today, I think "popular"
> may
> >>> not apply. For both, it is largely academics, students, and serious readers
> >>> who really care about either. (Except in Italy I think, where people know
> >>> about Dante and even know Dante--but that is not based on any
> statistics,
> >>> just anecdote.)
> >>>
> >>> We know that Eliot always was attracted to Dante and carried Dante or
> Virgil
> >>> around with him all the time. And he wrote first about Dante in 1920. But
> he
> >>> was introduced early and others, like Pound, also were seriously
> interested in
> >>> Dante. I would be interested in knowing just when and how Eliot took up
> the
> >>> idea of writing about Dante--and not being the first. When young, by his
> own
> >>> account, he preferred the "world" of Virgil. But I have the major book
> here by
> >>> an Italian scholar on Eliot and Dante, so I'll see what that tells me.
> >>>
> >>> Random ideas without research tell us nothing of value. So do you
> know?
> >>> And how? A history of Dante reception would seem to be the only real
> >>> source that could tell us.
> >>>
> >>> N
> >>>>>> P 01/05/13 8:16 PM >>>
> >>> Not all things are measured by books.
> >>> What would the popular awareness of Dante and the academic interest
> in
> >>> him be without TWL?
> >>> P. M.
> >>>
> >>> Nancy Gish <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Not likely: here are only three of many books on Dante in the early 20th
> >>> century published before Eliot's essays. There are more and easy to find
> in
> >>> Google.
> >>> N
> >>>
> >>> The Poetry of Dante <http://www.questia.com/library/685552/the-
> poetry-
> >>> of-dante>
> >>>
> >>> Contributors:
> >>>
> >>> Benedetto Croce
> >>>
> <http://www.questia.com/searchglobal?q=author!Benedetto%20Croce!AllW
> >>> ords>
> >>> Douglas Ainslie
> >>>
> <http://www.questia.com/searchglobal?q=author!Douglas%20Ainslie!AllWo
> >>> rds>
> >>>
> >>> Publisher:
> >>> Henry Holt and Company
> >>>
> <http://www.questia.com/searchglobal?q=publisher!Henry%20Holt%20and
> >>> %20Company!AllWords> 1922
> >>> Subjects:
> >>> Dante Alighieri, 1265-1321--Criticism and Interpretation
> >>>
> <http://www.questia.com/searchglobal?q=subject!Dante%20Alighieri%2C%2
> >>> 01265-1321--Criticism%20and%20Interpretation!AllWords>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Read now <http://www.questia.com/read/6257840/the-poetry-of-
> dante>
> >>> ...pres-ence of God. It has been said of Dante"Paradiso," that it should
> not
> >>> have...expressive ofaspiration for I know not what of divine and
> in­tangible,
> >>> a saying which...fear andhope, of distress and joy. But Dante, when
> >>> hecomposed the "Divine Comedy," was not inthis narrow condition of...
> >>> 18.
> >>> Dante, How to Know Him
> <http://www.questia.com/library/7562600/dante-
> >>> how-to-know-him>
> >>>
> >>> Contributors:
> >>>
> >>> Alfred M. Brooks
> >>>
> <http://www.questia.com/searchglobal?q=author!Alfred%20M.%20Brooks!A
> >>> llWords>
> >>>
> >>> Publisher:
> >>> Bobbs-Merrill
> >>> <http://www.questia.com/searchglobal?q=publisher!Bobbs-
> >>> Merrill!AllWords> 1916
> >>> Subjects:
> >>> Dante Alighieri, 1265-1321--Criticism and Interpretation
> >>>
> <http://www.questia.com/searchglobal?q=subject!Dante%20Alighieri%2C%2
> >>> 01265-1321--Criticism%20and%20Interpretation!AllWords>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Read now <http://www.questia.com/read/56725215/dante-how-to-
> know-
> >>> him>
> >>> ...forever. This, in brief, is the system onwhich Dante represents God as
> >>> dealing with man­kind...well as the greatest.TWO WAYS OF READING
> THE
> >>> DIVINE COMEDYIn The Divine Comedy Dante relates an imagina­tive
> >>> experience, but...
> >>> 19.
> >>> Dante & Aquinas <http://www.questia.com/library/109921/dante-
> aquinas>
> >>>
> >>> Contributors:
> >>>
> >>> Philip H. Wicksteed
> >>>
> <http://www.questia.com/searchglobal?q=author!Philip%20H.%20Wicksteed
> >>> !AllWords>
> >>>
> >>> Publisher:
> >>> J. M. Dent & Sons
> >>>
> <http://www.questia.com/searchglobal?q=publisher!J.%20M.%20Dent%20%
> >>> 20%20Sons!AllWords> 1913
> >>> Subjects:
> >>> Dante Alighieri, 1265-1321
> >>>
> <http://www.questia.com/searchglobal?q=subject!Dante%20Alighieri%2C%2
> >>> 01265-1321!AllWords>
> >>> Thomas, Aquinas, Saint, 1225?-1274
> >>>
> <http://www.questia.com/searchglobal?q=subject!Thomas%2C%20Aquinas
> >>> %2C%20Saint%2C%201225%3F-1274!AllWords>
> >>> Philosophy, Medieval
> >>>
> <http://www.questia.com/searchglobal?q=subject!Philosophy%2C%20Medie
> >>> val!AllWords>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Read now <http://www.questia.com/read/1004165/dante-aquinas>
> >>> ...particularcase it is), more happy than in Dante's treatmentof what he
> >>> regards as the...namely, of the humanwill.Aquinas and Dante are equally
> >>> emphatic in theirinsistence...are impossible, and thevery idea of divine
> >>> justice perishes.Many passages in the "Comedy" will occur tothe reader's
> >>> mind in which Dante dwells upon this
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>>>> P 01/04/13 10:24 PM >>>
> >>> Could it be said that Eliot, Virgil-like, led Dante into the 20th Century?
> >>> P. M.
> >>>
> >>> Chokh Raj <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> The Poet in Transformation: Dantean Aesthetics in T.S. Eliot's The Waste
> >>> Land (2012)
> >>>
> >>> By Jamie Berlin
> >>>
> >>> Abstract
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Dante was a seminal influence in T. S. Eliot’s poetry. Many scholars have
> >>> acknowledged Eliot’s professed debt to Dante and have examined Eliot’s
> >>> explicit imitations of Dante; however, few have pinpointed Dantean
> >>> influences in non-explicit references to Dante, and few have credited the
> >>> influence of a Dantean progress narrative across Eliot’s poem The Waste
> >>> Land. This thesis broadly analyzes the principles of Dante’s aesthetic in
> the
> >>> poem while analyzing the Sibyl, the Hanged Man, and the Prajapati
> parable
> >>> for their relevance to Eliot’s aesthetic theory. When Dantean aesthetics
> and
> >>> close readings of The Waste Land are compared with Eliot’s
> contemporary
> >>> essays on art, a fuller view of the aspects of Dante’s fundamental
> influence
> >>> emerges. In particular, the prominence of Dante in the sub-text of Eliot’s
> The
> >>> Waste Land reveals the nature of their shared aesthetic—that art is a
> moral
> >>> work by virtue of a spiritual transformation endured by the artist, which
> >>> involves both a sacrifice of self and a substantiation of self. A deeper
> >>> examination of Dante’s influence on T. S. Eliot yields a vaster
> understanding
> >>> of Eliot’s aesthetics while helping to elucidate one of the central
> mysteries in
> >>> Eliot’s theory of art, the role of “personality.”
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> http://commons.emich.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1794&context=these
> >>> s
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> CR
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> CR