Critical Analysis of “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock”

 
  Critical
 Analysis
 of
 “The
 Love
 Song
 of
 J.
 Alfred
 Prufrock”
 
  The
 title
 of
 the
 poem
 is
 Eliot’s
 first
 hint
 that
 this
 is
 not
 a
 traditional
 love
  poem
 at
 all.
 “J.
 Alfred
 Prufrock”
 is
 a
 farcical
 name,
 and
 Eliot
 wanted
 the
 subliminal
  connotation
 of
 a
 “prude”
 in
 a
 “frock.”
 (The
 original
 title
 was
 “Prufrock
 Among
 the
  Women.”)
 This
 emasculation
 contributes
 to
 a
 number
 of
 themes
 Eliot
 will
 explore
  revolving
 around
 paralysis
 and
 heroism,
 but
 the
 name
 also
 has
 personal
 meaning
  for
 Eliot.
 He
 wrote
 the
 poem
 in
 1909
 while
 a
 graduate
 student
 at
 Harvard
 (though
  he
 revised
 it
 over
 the
 next
 few
 years,
 eventually
 publishing
 it
 in
 1915
 and
 in
 book
  form
 in
 1917),
 and
 at
 the
 time
 he
 signed
 his
 name
 as
 “T.
 Stearns
 Eliot.”
  While
 it
 would
 appear,
 then,
 that
 T.
 Stearns
 Eliot
 was
 using
 J.
 Alfred
 Prufrock
  as
 an
 alter
 ego
 to
 explore
 his
 own
 emotions,
 this
 is
 not
 the
 case.
 Superficial
  differences
 aside
 -­?
 Eliot
 was
 a
 young
 man
 in
 1909,
 while
 Prufrock
 is
 balding
 and
  probably
 middle-­?aged
 -­?
 Eliot
 disdained
 poetry
 that
 focused
 on
 the
 poet
 himself.
 He
  wrote
 in
 his
 essay
 “Tradition
 and
 the
 Individual
 Talent”
 that
 the
 “progress
 of
 an
  artist
 is
 a
 continual
 self-­?sacrifice,
 a…

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