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Home » , » Write a critical appreciation of The Love Song Of J. Alfred Prufrock

The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock, one of the best known of Eliot's poems, was published in 1917 in the volume of poems called, Prufrock and Other Observations. It marks a complete break from the 19th century tradition of poetry, both in technique and content. The setting of the poem is urban which reveals the ugliness of modern civilization and the theme is the conflict of dilemma of a modern man who is unable to take a decision about making the proposal to the lady he loves. 

The lover in the poem is unheroic in his approach to love. He suffers from indecision and lack of nerves which makes him incapable of being bold enough to make a proposal of marriage or love to 8 woman. The poem portrays not only the indecision of modern man but also the triviality, artificiality, hypocrisy and emptiness of contemporary urban civilisation. The title of the poem shows it to be a love song but, in fact, it is a poem about failure in love. Actually it is an anti-romantic poem with a tone of irony throughout. 

The title of the poem is followed by an epigraph which is taken from Dante's Inferno. Dante meets in Hell a character called Guido who agrees to tell Dante of his past only because he knows that like him, the poet also is a lost soul, and so he will never return to earth to tell the people of his confession. The epigraph suggests the theme of the poem. 

The poem is in the nature of an ‘interior monologue’. it probes deep into the subconscious mind of the protagonist, renders his actual thought process on the move, and in this way highlights his neurotic nature and moral cowardice. 

Eliot has discarded the traditional verse form and rhythm. He believes in the freedom of the writer and in the flexibility of style. The verse form varies to suit the turn of thought and feeling. The metrical base is iambic, but we have short lines and long lines, and the rhyme scheme is irregular as is the stanza pattern. There is such a terse line as “Do i dare?” and we have the repetitive rhythm of the hne: *For decisions and revision which a minute will reverse.” This impose that the business of making up one’s mind is a monotonous activity. Further we find the languorous rhythm of the lines which decade the behaviour of the fog. 

The imagery of the poem is asleep Wendell. faith is entirely Untraditional Only the metaphysical poete of the 17th century could have used the image of the evening “spread out against the sky like a etherised upon  table”, to convey a mood of inactivity and listlessness,.

Modern poetry the Indirect and this indirectness has becs Maintained by Eliot in his use of ‘objective correlative’ in The Love Bong of J. Alfred Prufrock. Here Prufrock is the objective correlative or the medium through whose character Eliot portrays the dilemma of a modern man.

The Love Song Of J. Alfred Prufrock


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