The Love Song Of J. Alfred Prufrock Essay

The Love Song Of J. Alfred Prufrock Essay

Length: 1232 words (3.5 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

In his timeless poem “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock,” Thomas Stearns Eliot sheds light on Europe’s devastatingly morbid backdrop after the First World War by juxtaposing the parallel concepts of loneliness and depression through the utilization of a fragmented stream of consciousness as his primary narrative mode. In view of that, T. S. Eliot accordingly employs the persona of J. Alfred Prufrock, an intensely indecisive middle-aged man who ponders an “overwhelming question” in the context of his desire to spark up a conversation with a woman. Through his self-mockery, Prufrock recognizes that he is no majestic tragic hero, no Hamlet, no John the Baptist, but rather a petty and lugubriously talkative fool trapped in a dull world of taking tea, yellow fog, and repetitive conversations; contemplating an expression of pointlessness and impotence over and over, wondering whether his life “would [be] worth it, after all” (Lines 87 and 99). Respectively, Eliot constructs a remorseful and bitter, yet romantic and pensive tone throughout the poem that explores the disillusionment of the modern day; developing a sense of detachment and dissatisfaction, as Prufrock develops unhappy relations to time and space.
Beginning the first stanza with a faux-romantic invitation to explore the contemporary imagination, T. S. Eliot compares the evening sky to “a patient etherized upon a table;” (Line 3) creating an oddly malcontented atmosphere right from the start. In the spirit of isolated self-expressionism, the speaker appears imprisoned in an impenetrable bubble – as “if each consciousness is an opaque sphere, [and] Prufrock has no hope of being understood by others” (Miller). Subsequently, Prufrock’s hesitant and indecisive nature emerge as...


... middle of paper ...


...arns Eliot’s first modern essay not only revolutionized the world of poetry, but also introduced a new and timeless protagonist whose “voice is the outcome of voices—echoes, allusions taken from the past, other literary texts” (Manda). Prufrock, in his solitude, presents two different people: a romantic dreamer that remains in a trance-like state during short-lived moments of an idealistic reality, moments of reminiscence and recollections; and a foolish panic-struck, and timid self that shies away from human contact in fear of consequences. Prufrock’s two selves, however, are both powerless in escaping reality for “[they] have heard the mermaids singing, each to each. [Though they] do not think that they will sing to [him]" (Lines 124-125). Hence Prufrock will drown whilst indulging his dreams, or he will be awoken from his bliss, only to be drowned by human voices.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Essay on The Love Song Of J. Alfred Prufrock

- Poems are often difficult to understand. They are written in an indirect way, but this allows authors to portray themes differently than in other pieces of literature. Various literary techniques display these themes, and the indirect way of stating them forces readers to use a deeper level of thought. T.S. Eliot, for instance, expresses a human tendency in his poem, “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock.” By using personification, symbolism, and allusions, he displays the tendency of individuals to worry about what others will think about them, their thoughts, and their actions....   [tags: T. S. Eliot, The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock]

Better Essays
747 words (2.1 pages)

The Love Song Of J. Alfred Prufrock Essay example

- In the 19th century, influenced by the unceasing global warfare, the fragile peace and prosperity enjoyed by the western society were on the verge of collapse. Furthermore, conventional moral ideals and spiritual values faced severe scrutiny, and the public felt extremely pessimistic about the future. Under this circumstance, T. S. Eliot had created the poem, The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock, to reflect the sickness of the society and the weakness of the humanity . In this poem, he describes an internal conflict of the narrator in the poem who eventually wavered his offer of marriage in determination....   [tags: T. S. Eliot, The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock]

Better Essays
1086 words (3.1 pages)

The Love Song Of J. Alfred Prufrock Essay

- I have chosen to write about T. S. Eliot’s “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock” since the poem has surprised me in various ways. To begin, I was surprised at the fact that this so called “love song” was not a love song or poem at all. Actually, it was, but it was not a love that had two individuals admiring each other mutually. The poem addressed the issues of a man who tried to pursue a woman but could not because of the insecurities he dealt with. However, the poem caused me a bit of trouble in order to write a thesis statement about it....   [tags: T. S. Eliot, The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock]

Better Essays
712 words (2 pages)

Essay about The Love Song Of J. Alfred Prufrock

- T. S. Eliot uses The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock to highlight the everyday anxiety which stops humans from living meaningful lives. A few ways in which Eliot exemplifies this everyday anxiety is through the suppression of important thoughts or questions, a mundane hyper-focus on the trivial, and a crippling fear of other’s opinions. One major idea throughout The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock is the suppression of an important question. The first the reader hears of this question is in stanza 1, lines 10-12, “To lead you to an overwhelming question ....   [tags: T. S. Eliot, The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock]

Better Essays
911 words (2.6 pages)

The Love Song Of J. Alfred Prufrock Essay

- One of the twentieth century’s major poets was a British, American-born essayist: T.S. Eliot 1888-1965. In his works, he uses a distinct style of writing, such as folk tales to hold and regulate contemporary experience, compiles juxtaposition of different voices, traditions, and communication, and targets on form to act as the bearer of meaning, thus leading many of his biggest fans to consider his poetry an equivalent with modernism. Throughout his career, Eliot’s poetry underwent momentous changes, which brought forth some of his most famous works....   [tags: T. S. Eliot, The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock]

Better Essays
1124 words (3.2 pages)

The Love Song Of J. Alfred Prufrock Essay

- In his timeless poem “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock,” Thomas Stearns Eliot sheds light on Europe’s devastatingly morbid backdrop after the First World War by juxtaposing the parallel concepts of loneliness and depression through the utilization of a fragmented stream of consciousness as his primary narrative mode. In view of that, T. S. Eliot accordingly employs the persona of J. Alfred Prufrock, an intensely indecisive middle-aged man who ponders an “overwhelming question” in the context of his desire to spark up a conversation with a woman....   [tags: T. S. Eliot, The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock]

Better Essays
1232 words (3.5 pages)

The Love Song Of J Alfred Prufrock Essay

- Self-doubt is a constant emotion people in society face at some point in life. Some may struggle with it more than others. It is unavoidable and often ignored. Self-doubt is the lack of confidence in one self and one’s abilities. It is a difficult emotion to face head on and deal with, so it is simply pushed to the back burner. This becomes very dangerous because it has the ability to take over one’s life in the blink of an eye, much like Prufrock in T.S. Eliot’s poem “The Love Song of J Alfred Prufrock”....   [tags: T. S. Eliot, The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock]

Better Essays
1105 words (3.2 pages)

The Pitiful Prufrock of The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock Essay

- The Pitiful Prufrock of The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock        T.S. Elliot's "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock," is a melancholy poem of one man's  frustrated search to find the meaning of his existence.  The speaker's strong use of imagery contributes to the poems theme of communion and loneliness. The Poem begins with an invitation from Prufrock to follow him through his self-examination. The imagery of this invitation begins with a startling simile, "Let us go then you and I/ When the evening is spread out against the sky/ Like a patient etherised upon a table." This simile literally describes the evening sky, but functions on another level....   [tags: Love Song J. Alfred Prufrock]

Better Essays
1314 words (3.8 pages)

An Analysis of The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock Essay

-   The editors of anthologies containing T. S. Eliot's "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" invariably footnote the reference to Lazarus as John 11:1-44; rarely is the reference footnoted as Luke 16:19-31. Also, the reference to John the Baptist is invariably footnoted as Matthew 14:3-11; never have I seen the reference footnoted as an allusion to Oscar Wilde's Salome. The sources that one cites can profoundly affect interpretations of the poem. I believe that a correct reading of Eliot's "Prufrock" requires that one cite Wilde, in addition to Matthew, and Luke, in addition to John, as the sources for the John the Baptist and Lazarus being referenced....   [tags: Love Song J. Alfred Prufrock]

Better Essays
1939 words (5.5 pages)

Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock Essay: Time

- Time and The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock     Pericles once said "Be ruled by time, the wisest counselor of all." This ruler of the past might not have had the technology of today, but he did not need it to recognize time’s domineering nature over all mankind. No matter what advances man makes, he will never be able to slow down time nor stop it completely; nor it appears will he be able to leap into the past or the future. Time is one thing that man cannot manipulate, instead it manipulates man....   [tags: Love Song J. Alfred Prufrock]

Better Essays
2012 words (5.7 pages)