If people are disappointed with themselves and what they have become, then there are naturally two options for remedy. One is to do whatever possible to change themselves and pave a brighter future. The second, perhaps less desirable, is to realize that change is useless or near-impossible, which leads to either finding peace in the way things are or recognizing the hopelessness in the absence of the way things could be. T.S. Eliot’s “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock” reaffirms the uselessness of change (FINISH). This reflective yet despairing poem is the lament of a man who, though he would like to muster up the courage to become something else, is trapped by an inflexible inability to change who he is.
Before we are introduced to Prufrock himself, we notice that the initial scenes of this poem paint a landscape of apathy. The narrator mentions little about himself initially and beckons that we follow him down into a world without consequence “of restless nights in one-night cheap hotels” (Eliot 6). The later “streets that follow like a tedious argument of insidious intent” set the stage for Prufrock’s dilemma (ibid 9-10). Audrey Cahill says this scene foreshadows “Prufrock’s dialogue with himself, a dialogue which leads nowhere” and that thrusts the reader into meaningless chaos (6). Thus, even if these streets lead to an overwhelming question, the journey down them is rather mind-numbing and unnecessary if the answer gets us nowhere or, worse, merely emphasizes our own desolation. This is compounded by the appearance of a mysterious yellow catlike fog that “curled once about the house and fell asleep” (Eliot 22). Cahill also affirms that becaus...
... middle of paper ...
...ng transformative power (Jain 54). Soon enough, “human voices [will] wake” our narrator—and he will drown in (FINISH) (Eliot 131).
T.S. Eliot would later remark, “I’m afraid that J. Alfred Prufrock didn’t have much of a love life” (Southam 47). That is what makes this “love song” so brutal and caustic. For even when change doesn’t matter (FINISH quite atypical of standard romance. a man caught in stasis when (???). ). Even in his fantasies, Prufrock is Prufrock. (LEAD UP TO PINNED TO THE WALL) “, then how should I begin?” (line). The answer is that he can begin in any way he chooses—but it will not matter in the end. No matter his speech and no matter his wardrobe, he will forever be J. Alfred Prufrock—with a love song yet unsung that he believes the world would never want to hear.
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- The Loneliness of J. Alfred Prufrock In "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock", written by T. S. Elliot in 1917, J. Alfred Prufrock makes the reader privy to his innermost thoughts on an evening out. Prufrock wants to lead the reader to an overwhelming question, raising expectations, but he is a bitterly disappointing man; he never asks the question. He lacks self-esteem, women are intimidating to him, and he is too much of a coward to ever be successful with women. The title is "The Love Song,", not "A Love Song." So whenever Prufrock is around women, he behaves the same way.... [tags: Love Song J. Alfred Prufrock]
1039 words (3 pages)
- Explication of T.S. Eliot's "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" In T.S. Eliot's "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock," the author is establishing the trouble the narrator is having dealing with middle age. Prufrock(the narrator) believes that age is a burden and is deeply troubled by it.. His love of some women cannot be because he feels the prime of his life is over. His preoccupation with the passing of time characterizes the fear of aging he has. The poem deals with the aging and fears associated with it of the narrator.... [tags: TS Eliot Alfred Prufrock Song Essays]
934 words (2.7 pages)
- Prufrock by Eliot In his poem Eliot paints the picture of an insecure man looking for his niche in society. Prufrock has fallen in with the times, and places a lot of weight on social status and class to determine his identity. He is ashamed of his personal appearance and looks towards social advancement as a way to assure himself and those around him of his worth and establish who he is. Throughout the poem the reader comes to realize that Prufrock has actually all but given up on himself and now sees his balding head and realizes that he has wasted his life striving for an unattainable goal.... [tags: Papers]
1206 words (3.4 pages)
- On the surface, ?The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock. is about an older man who is distressed by his own inability to tell a woman of his desire for her. He tries to relay his feelings to her but comes up with all kinds of excuses not to, and ultimately does not. The speakers. real problem is not that he is just too timid to confess his love for this particular woman, it is that he has a somewhat unproductive, bleak life and has a lack of willpower and boldness to change that life. The poem starts out describing the dreary streets with cheap hotels and restaurants where the speaker lives.... [tags: essays research papers]
452 words (1.3 pages)
- Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock - Inability to Love T. S. Eliot's "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" is not a poem about love, at least in any traditional sense. Rather It is a collection of the fragmented thoughts of a man without self-esteem. Far from being about love, it is about one man's inability to love (himself or the world around him.) It is the cynical statement of a man who does not believe good things will ever happen to him, or that the world has anything to offer him. The title is bitterly ironic; Prufrock does not love any body, least of all himself, (no matter how much he might aspire to the ideal of romance and passion), nor does he believe that any one could ever lo... [tags: Love Song J. Alfred Prufrock]
1355 words (3.9 pages)
- The Love Song of J.Alfred Prufrock - The Distress of J.Alfred Prufrock The human psyche is divided into three distinct aspects: the Persona, the Shadow, and the Anima/Animus; at least, it is according to Jungian Psychology. Drawing heavily on the theories developed by Freud, Jung's psychological concepts tell us that if these three facets are not properly integrated - that is, if one of the three is overly dominant, or repressed, or all three are in conflict with each other - then an individual's energies - his libido - will be out of alignment, causing psychological distress and unconscious problems.... [tags: Love Song J. Alfred Prufrock]
1080 words (3.1 pages)
- Literature Review Change blindness is the inability to detect changes within a scene. Inattentional blindness occurs when people have a hard time perceiving stimuli if attention resources are focused elsewhere. Both of these phenomena were noticed by Harvard Psychologist William James who based his personal observations on our effort to “focus on some things in exclusion to others (1890, as cited by Goldstein, 2012).” He went on to suggest that the perceptual system has a limited capacity for processing information.... [tags: inability to detect changes within a scene]
1141 words (3.3 pages)
- 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]
1314 words (3.8 pages)
- T. S. Eliot's poem "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" reveals the unvoiced inner thoughts of a disillusioned, lonely, insecure, and self-loathing middle-aged man. The thoughts are presented in a free association, or stream of consciousness style, creating images from which the reader can gain insight into Mr. Prufrock's character. Mr. Prufrock is disillusioned and disassociated with society, yet he is filled with longing for love, comfort, and companionship. He is self-conscious and fearful of his image as viewed through the world's eye, a perspective from which he develops his own feelings of insignificance and disgust.... [tags: The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock]
956 words (2.7 pages)
- Human Insecurity in T.S Eliot's The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock T.S Eliot's The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock is an examination of human insecurity and folly, embodied in the title's J. Alfred Prufrock. Eliot's story of a man's "overwhelming question", his inability to ask it, and consequently, his mental rejection plays off the poem's many ambiguities, both structural and literal. Eliot uses these uncertainties to develop both the plot of the poem and the character of J. Alfred Prufrock.... [tags: Love Song J. Alfred Prufrock]
1130 words (3.2 pages)