Development of T. S. Eliot’s Style From Poetry to Poetic Drama: Dialogism, Carnivalization, and Music

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This book is a detailed investigation of T. S. Eliot’s work in the light of Bakhtin’s theories of dialogism and carnival. It employs a new paradigm for interpreting Eliot’s work, offering new points of analysis regarding, in particular, his later works.


“[Professor Carol L. Yang] has boldly synthesized an up-to-date approach to Eliot from the best critical theories available, and she has contributed many insights and syntheses that will be of value to all readers of Eliot for a long time to come.” – Prof. William Harmon, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

“This book is particularly valuable…. Professor Yang reinvigorates our understanding of a series of devices and discourses which are often key to Eliot’s writing. This is original and powerful work, and often enables us to see Eliot from a new angle.” –Prof. Steve Ellis, University of Birmingham

Table of Contents

Foreword by William Harmon
The Pursuit of a Living Form
Poetic Drama and the Tradition of Carnivalization
Chapter 1: Prufrock and Other Observations: Dialogism and the Play with Dialogic Relationships
1.1 Introduction
1.2 “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock”: the Microdialogue
1.3 “La Figlia che Piange”: Multivoiced Formulation
1.4 “Dans le Restaurant”: Hybrid Construction
Chapter 2: Carnivalesque Spirit and Grotesque Realism
2.1 Introduction
2.2 Carnivalesque Spirit
2.3 Grotesque Realism
Chapter 3: The Waste Land: The Culmination of Early Style
3.l Introduction
3.2 Fear in the Way: He Do the Police in Different Voices
3.3 Grotesque Realism: A Hermeneutic Journey
Chapter 4: Four Quartets: Music, Chorus, and the Search for a Public Chronotope
4.1 Introduction
4.2.1 The String Quartet: A True Musical Conversation
4.2.2 The Musical Structure of Four Quartets: Polyphonic Texture and Contrapuntal Composition
4.3.1 Choral Speaking: From The Rock to Four Quartets
4.3.2 Four Quartets: Agon and Parabasis
Chapter 5: Theater in the Way: from The Rock to Murder in the Cathedral
5.1 Introduction
5.2 The Role of the Chorus: Incorporated Genres in The Rock
5.3 Murder in the Cathedral: From the Incorporated Genres to the Socratic Dialogue
5.3.1 Socratic Dialogue: Devices of Syncrisis and Anacrisis
5.3.2 The Fourth Drama
5.3.3 The Double
5.4 An Apologia for Murder in the Cathedral
Chapter 6: The Cocktail Party: Grotesque Symposium and Socrates Dialogue
6.1 Introduction
6.2 The Grotesque Symposium
6.2.1 Prologue: Banquet Imagery, Prandial Speech, and the Growth-and-Fertility Complex
6.2.2 The Grotesque Symposium and Agon
6.2.3 The Grand Banquet of Grotesque Procreation
6.3 The Socratic Dialogue
6.3.1 The Socrates Figure and Socratic Laughter: The Trio of Rogue, Fool, and Clown
6.3.2 On the Threshold: Dialogism, Anacrisis, and Syncrisis

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