essay 4, motif in the wastelan

essay 4, motif in the wastelan - Jared Hartzman Cecily...

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Jared Hartzman 11/6/08 Cecily Swanson Literary Collaboration Motif in The Waste Land Throughout The Waste Land , T.S. Eliot used various poetic techniques and devices, such as the use of motif. In all five sections of the poem, Eliot repeats various words or phrases, which bring certain images to the reader’s mind. Examples of these motifs would be death, the Phoenician sailor, and the nature of water. They are intertwined with one another and each of them is significant to a deeper meaning in The Waste Land . And this meaning is that the current society has undergone a moral death and is in need of a recovery. Water contributes to both death and this recovery throughout Eliot’s poem. From the very first section of the poem, “The Burial of the Dead,” death can be seen as a main theme. In the beginning of this section, Eliot uses an extended image of a decomposing corpse lying underground in winter,
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which "kept us warm, covering / Earth in forgetful snow, feeding / a little life with dried tubers"(Eliot, 5-7). A tuber is the fleshy part of an underground stem, but here it is human flesh, feeding new plants. Because “Human society is so disillusioned… it has undergone a moral death, an idea on which Eliot plays throughout the poem” (Answers.com, The Waste Land). In the second stanza Eliot describes the land as "stony rubbish," where roots and branches do not grow. Here "the dead tree gives no shelter, the cricket no relief” and there is "no sound of water"(Eliot, 23-24). In the fourth stanza of the first section, the reader is introduced to Madame Sosostris, a famous fortune teller in Europe. She tells the speaker to fear death by water. This is
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essay 4, motif in the wastelan - Jared Hartzman Cecily...

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