CR:

In response to the quote from Randall Jarrell, you began a series of posts on the objective correlative to prove that Eliot uses this technique throughout his works.

I'm not sure you get Jarrell's point.

Jarrell's not _really_ saying that Eliot's poetry has no references/allusions to other works, nor is he _really_ saying that Eliot doesn't use various well-thought out intellectual devices, such as the objective correlative, to express emotion in art.

At root, Jarrell is dismayed that Eliot's body of work is frequently thought of (and taught in universities) as being highly cerebral, "difficult poetry" (which I guess, it often is) without _also_ seeing the work as that of a highly emotional, troubled man who uses his poetry to exorcise his demons. It's the difference between "The Thinker" and "The Scream."

Jarrell wants us to hear the scream hidden behind the thinker.

-- Tom --

 
 




Date: Tue, 23 Jul 2013 18:17:15 -0700
From: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: Yale "open course" lectures on Eliot
To: [log in to unmask]

Let me put it again:  

IMHO, the contention that "a set of objects, a situation, a chain of events" is a formula without being formulated into one is absurd. For here is what Eliot wrote: “The only way of expressing emotion in the form of art is by //finding an ‘objective correlative’//; in other words, a set of objects, a situation, a chain of events //which shall be the formula of that particular emotion// ".

CR


From: Chokh Raj <[log in to unmask]>
To: [log in to unmask]
Sent: Tuesday, July 23, 2013 10:49 AM
Subject: Re: Yale "open course" lectures on Eliot

In fact, Eliot's definition of an Objective Correlative is quite broad and open-ended. It leaves all the leeway for a poet to maneuver the expression of a particular emotion, i.e. to formulate

a) a set of objects,

b) a chain of events,

c) a situation

in such a way as to evoke a particular emotion which Eliot elucidated elsewhere as the 'significant emotion of art'.

CR


From: Nancy Gish <[log in to unmask]>
To: [log in to unmask]
Sent: Tuesday, July 23, 2013 10:10 AM
Subject: Re: Yale "open course" lectures on Eliot

That is not what Eliot says. He says the latter is a formula--not the same at all.

>>> Chokh Raj 07/23/13 9:00 AM >>>

And yes, a FORMULA, that's how a modernist poet formulates "a set of objects, a situation, a chain of events" to evoke a particular emotion. 

CR



In point of fact, Eliot's poetry is replete with objective correlatives. These are the means by which he proceeds, from first to last. There is not a poem that does not employ this technique. One would end up quoting his entire poetry. Tell me where he does not use this celebrated technique and I shall get back with illustrative quotations.  

CR 

Tom Colket <[log in to unmask]> wrote Monday, July 22, 2013 1:37 PM:  

... I was reminded of a passage about Eliot that I've always loved, from Randall Jarrell’s 1962 lecture, "Fifty Years of American Poetry":
 
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Won't the future say to us in helpless astonishment: //"But did you actually believe that all those things about objective correlatives, classicism, the tradition, applied to his poetry?//  Surely you must have seen that he was one of the most subjective and daemonic poets who ever lived, the victim and helpless beneficiary of his own inexorable compulsions, obsessions? From a psychoanalytical point of view he was far and away the most interesting poet of your century. But for you, of course, after the first few years, his poetry existed undersea, thousands of feet below the deluge of exegesis, explication, source listing, scholarship and criticism that overwhelmed it. And yet how bravely and personally it survived, its eyes neither coral nor mother-of-pearl but plainly human, full of human anguish!"
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-- Tom --