Thursday, October 13, 2022

Letting off more than steam

 … ‘The Waste Land,’ T.S. Eliot’s primal scream, resonates 100 years on. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

Eliot’s timing was perfect. “The Waste Land” launched in a world thoroughly demoralized and disillusioned by World War I. All gods were dead, all faiths in man shaken, as F. Scott Fitzgerald famously summed up the period. A two-volume slog called “The Decline of the West” bowed the bookshelves of countless intellectuals, assuring them that civilization was petering out.

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