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“Time for you and time for me,

And time yet for a hundred indecisions,

And for a hundred visions and revisions,

Before the taking of a toast and tea.”


Insights,

CR


On Thu, Feb 22, 2018 at 11:45 PM Chanan Mittal <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> Many poets have dramatized a conversation between two selves of self but
> that is not a medical condition of hysteria. But yes, when you have a split
> personality, you are sometimes this person, sometimes that, that is a
> medical condition. For instance, Eliot’s first wife was found walking the
> streets in a guise other than her natural self, it was a case of
> dissociation, a form of hysteria. Who does not have a conversation with
> his/her own self? That is quite natural and human.
>
> CR
>
> On Thu, Feb 22, 2018 at 11:25 PM Nancy Gish <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>
>> Your reading of the poem, according to you, sees the "you and I" as "two
>> selves." I do not know what you think "hysteria" means, but it is not
>> popular images of crazed women or mad weeping.
>>
>> In the late 19th and early 20th century, it was a serious medical
>> diagnosis. And having two selves was one version (there were many, but this
>> was one major one). So your focus on the poem as opening with "two selves"
>> is quite specifically within the definition at the time.
>>
>> This is simple history of medicine, not an impression of over-emotional
>> behavior. Eliot's interest in this topic is frequent in his
>> writing--consider at least the poem "Hysteria." And he had read a great
>> deal about it.
>>
>> On Thu, Feb 22, 2018 at 10:44 PM, Chanan Mittal <[log in to unmask]>
>> wrote:
>>
>>> Let us go then, you and I,
>>> When the evening is spread out against the sky
>>> Like a patient etherized upon a table;
>>> Let us go, through certain half-deserted streets,
>>> The muttering retreats
>>> Of restless nights in one-night cheap hotels
>>> And sawdust restaurants with oyster-shells:
>>> Streets that follow like a tedious argument
>>> Of insidious intent
>>> To lead you to an overwhelming question ...
>>> Oh, do not ask, “What is it?”
>>> Let us go and make our visit.
>>>
>>> No, nothing hysterical about “you and I” here.
>>> My focus is on this poem only.
>>>
>>> CR
>>>
>>> On Thu, Feb 22, 2018 at 10:00 PM Nancy Gish <[log in to unmask]>
>>> wrote:
>>>
>>>> If you read clinical descriptions of hysteria--in psychiatric texts,
>>>> for example as well as Janet--from that time, what you call "you and I"
>>>> would be a form of hysteria. Eliot was very familiar with these definitions
>>>> because he knew Janet and James.
>>>>
>>>> Also, it appears in "Prufrock's Pervigilium."
>>>>
>>>> On Thu, Feb 22, 2018 at 8:54 PM, Chanan Mittal <[log in to unmask]>
>>>> wrote:
>>>>
>>>>> Whatever, there is no sign of hysteria in ‘The Love Song of J. Alfred
>>>>> Prufrock.’
>>>>>
>>>>> CR
>>>>>
>>>>> On Thu, Feb 22, 2018 at 1:39 PM Nancy Gish <[log in to unmask]>
>>>>> wrote:
>>>>>
>>>>>> Eliot said that himself in a 1962 interview: he said Prufrock was
>>>>>> partly himself and partly someone older. But duality is all over Eliot's
>>>>>> work. It was also a major psychological issue in the early 20th century,
>>>>>> and the most important then (until about 1920) was Pierre Janet. Janet
>>>>>> lectured on hysteria at Harvard the year Eliot arrived, and he and Morton
>>>>>> Prince and William James were all part of a group who studied and discussed
>>>>>> dissociation. At that time, duality/dissociation was clinically listed as a
>>>>>> form of hysteria.
>>>>>>
>>>>>> His "different take" is illustrated by an earlier claim, to Kristian
>>>>>> Smidt, that it was spoken to a male friend. But Eliot often said different
>>>>>> things at different times: he did not have any consistent "different take."
>>>>>>
>>>>>> My article in Cassandra's and my book,* Gender, Desire, and
>>>>>> Sexuality in T. S. Eliot *(Cambridge, 2004) traces the psychology
>>>>>> sources and the representations in the poetry--if anyone wants facts and
>>>>>> sources. The note on the first page also lists many who have discussed
>>>>>> duality in the poetry.
>>>>>>
>>>>>> Sorry for the ad, but the book has been out for a long time and is
>>>>>> cited a lot. So this topic is not simple or just impressionistic. Also, for
>>>>>> anyone interested, it should be in many libraries.
>>>>>> Nancy
>>>>>>
>>>>>> On Thu, Feb 22, 2018 at 1:17 PM, Chanan Mittal <[log in to unmask]>
>>>>>> wrote:
>>>>>>
>>>>>>> Incidentally, I’ve always subscribed to the “you and I” in the poem
>>>>>>> as two selves of Prufrock, the poem being Prufrock’s conversation with his
>>>>>>> own self. So have some critics. Despite Eliot’s different take on it. What
>>>>>>> do you think? Think.
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> CR
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> On Thu, Feb 22, 2018 at 12:23 PM Chanan Mittal <[log in to unmask]>
>>>>>>> wrote:
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>> T.S. Eliot at Harvard
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>> http://eliotatharvard.blogspot.com/
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>> “My morning coat, my collar mounting firmly to the chin,
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>> My necktie rich and modest, but asserted by a simple pin—“
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>> Look at Eliot’s 1910 picture here:
>>>>>>>> https://english.fas.harvard.edu/event/5693/
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>> Interesting pages.
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>> CR
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>
>>