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Dialogism and Human Comedy of T.S. Eliot’s The Waste Land

Ian Probstein
80,00 ₽


Ian Probstein,

associate professor of English at Touro College & University System, New York.

Published numerous books and articles as well as translations from Russian into English and from English into Russian; in all, has about 500 publications. His most recent book is The River of Time: Time-Space, Language and History in Avant-Garde, Modernist, and Contemporary Poetry.  Boston: Academic Studies Press, 2017.

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Using Mikhail Bakhtin’s ideas of dialogic imagination (dialogism), polyphony, heteroglossia, choronotopos (chronotope), Menippean satire , the author suggests that T.S. Eliot’s The Waste Land has all the features of a dialogic human drama.

Even though Bakhtin never considered poetry, not just lyric poetry, seriously, his major discoveries, such as ‘chronotopos,’ dialogism and polyphony as well as parody “as one of the most ancient and widespread forms of rendering others’ direct speech”1 can be found not only in epic poetry, but also in lyric poetry and most certainly, in the poetry of Modernism and Avant-Garde. Eliot’s entire work is a dialogue with humanity. The use of dialogism allows Eliot to develop the plot, to use implied narrators to reveal themes and ideas, to shift in time and space, creating the ‘chronotopi’ of love, of the road, of quest and combining the epic past with the lyric present, to create the music of the piece, to ‘defamiliarize’ reality and myth, making myth real and the reality unreal, and as a result, to reveal the human drama as in Dante’s Divine Comedy.

Keywords: Dialogic imagination, polyphony, Menippean satire, chronotope, allusions, demaliarization (estrangement), make it new, mythological consciousness myth, demythologization, neo-mythologization.



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