Posted at 10.26.2018
"The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" by T. S. Eliot is one of all greatly anthologized poems of the twentieth hundred years. Upon reading the poem, this reality does not by any means seem surprising. At first glance, the poem is extremely cryptic in its meaning and subject matter. However, by analyzing the literary techniques that Eliot employs, such as diction, repetition, and allusion uncovers the poems central communication declaring that public rejection and too little initiative produces a life without meaning and results a lethargic and paranoid mental state, a mental hell.
Another of Eliot's techniques is the use of repetition of certain motifs, which provides focus on the ideas reviewed recently. Prufrock constantly mentions an excess of "time" (21). Supported with what eye-sight, revision, and indecision, his message becomes clear. He's preventing the confrontation with the woman he seeks, citing that there will be plenty of time for him to try again. The oppression that he undergoes causes a identified elongation of your energy. Because time goes by so little by little for Prufrock, he seems that he will have more time for you to overcome his fears. Furthermore, because Prufrock thinks his life is pointless, he will never have any outstanding commitments and will always be free to try to fail again. Prufrock, in addition, consistently asks himself the same question, "SHOULD I dare?" (44). The repetition in itself shows Prufrock's indecisiveness because he needs to repeat what to himself to create a choice. However, by duplicating the rhetorical question, the result is multiplied, magnifying his inability to constitute his head and his insufficient self-confidence in himself. Also, the question shows the degeneration of his mental state. While initially, Prufrock's concerns are much more grand in characteristics (the world), eventually his assurance and self confidence deteriorates in such a big manner that he even starts to question if he should even "eat a peach" (122). Finally, Prufrock mentions lots of that time period that he has "known" (49) everything. Prufrock expresses his lethargy and his discontent with the life that he leads. He has experienced all those things could include his uneventful, unexciting life-style. Along with the heavy repetition in "Prufrock, " it becomes clear that has simply expanded tired of having to endure the life that he lives.
Another crucial component that Eliot uses in his poem is that of allusion. In the very beginning of the poem, Eliot utilizes a portion of Dante's Inferno. Prufrock voices these lines because he is in his own mental damnation and realizes there is no way to avoid it of his situation. He believes that few will listen to his story, and the ones who do undergo a similar destiny as he does. Then, he alludes to John the Baptist when he says "I have seen my mind (grown just a little bald) brought in upon a platter" (82). In such a simply declaration, two facts are affirmed. Prufrock deems his living aimless as he says that he has already been decapitated and enjoys forget about. Also, he contrasts himself from the prophet because first of all, he is not and will never even be desired by women and secondly, that he will never lose his head in any glorious or majestic become the prophet does. Finally, Eliot alludes to Lazarus and Shakespeare's Hamlet. He distances himself from Lazarus and areas that he's "not Prince Hamlet" but instead is the "attendant lordthe fool" (111, 112, 119). Prufrock separates himself from the heroic savoir, Lazarus, and Hamlet, who although mired by insecurity and hesitation, eventually brings himself to do this, and compares himself to Polonius, who dies in later years as a bumbling fool. Prufrock, unlike Hamlet, won't disrupt the world to avenge its evils and rectify wrongdoings. He identifies his own impotence, and accepts his fate to be a passionless old man and also to live a bleak, insubstantial life. Prufrock mentions these heroic characters to provide as a stark compare to himself. He acknowledges that he'll forever languish through the life that will lack goal.
The diction, repetition and allusions in "Prufrock" all contribute to one central subject matter. Prufrock, constantly reluctant of rejection from women and insecure about himself, lives a life with no meaning. He together is continuing to grow weary of such a passionless life and in addition has grown to anticipate such an identical fate. Such circumstances of mind has triggered Prufrock to cage himself in a mental hell: unsatisfied along with his life, and too apprehensive to do anything to change it. While Prufrock's plight invokes pity, Eliot seems to be expressing a state that is general at one point in life. Although, the levels of emotion may never match the power of these that Prufrock experience, everyone will eventually undergo a similar period of mental torment.