Essay on Analysis Of. Eliot 's ' The Love Song Of J. Alfred Prufrock

Essay on Analysis Of. Eliot 's ' The Love Song Of J. Alfred Prufrock

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How does T.S. Eliot portray Prufrock’s crippling social anxiety in ‘The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock’?

We can see Prufrock’s crippling social anxiety through the language though the language and symbolism in T.S. Eliot’s poem: A love song by J Alfred Prufrock. Elliot uses the self-description “Like a patient etherized upon a table” Eliot, uses a simile to put this point across, giving us the image of a patient literally being etherised upon the table as if he’s crippled socially. Whereas everybody else is free flowing, he struggles and cannot cope with having to be a social butterfly, questioning everything he should say constantly. “With a bald spot in the middle of my hair” shows his anxiety and the fact that he is extremely self-conscious, thinking too much of people’s opinions of him. Eliot uses more formal and intelligent language to put across the idea that Prufrock is well off in terms of money and generally is well spoken, but he is just seeking emotional fulfilment rather than material fulfilment. “Of restless nights in cheap hotels” reinforces this as Prufrock is referring to either one night stands which are both meaningless in an emotional sense, Prufrock could most likely have both as they carry little to no social interaction. However, Prufrock wants better for himself yet cannot seem to get hold of the sentimental interactions he desires due to his crippling social anxiety. Elliot uses a simple rhyme scheme perhaps to convey his ideas in a clear manner, putting more emphasis on the meaning of the poem rather than the rhythm.
Prufrock’s feeling of inadequacy is visible when he states “In the room women come and go, talking of Michelangelo” This potentially shows that he feels unless he is someone of Michelangel...


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...f Eliot’s poems, we see a lot of city imagery, reference to hotels restaurants and streets which in turn is ironic as it conflicts with Prufrock’s own personality, quiet and anxious in comparison to the load bustling city where he really doesn’t seem to fit in. It also emphasises the general sense that Prufrock is (or at least feels like he is) out of place amongst the society he lives in. The “Yellow smoke” used in the third stanza is coming from factories, reinforcing the idea that Prufrock is in a city as Eliot seems to suggest. Prufrock’s disdain for the environment he lives in is amplified by the first stanza as he says “Of restless nights in one-night cheap hotels” which is most likely reference to prostitution, something he does not desire, it adds to his anxiety as it seems to suggest that these romantic relationships he desires are in very limited quantity.

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