Analysis of The Hollow Men by T.S. Eliot Essay

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Analysis of The Hollow Men by T.S. Eliot Eliot, a master of the written craft, carefully thought out each aspect of his 1925 poem "The Hollow Men." Many differences in interpretation exist for Eliot's complex poetry. One issue never debated is the extensive range of things to consider in his TS Eliot's writing. Because TS Eliot often intertwined his writing by having one piece relate to another "The Hollow Men" is sometimes considered a mere appendage to The Waste Land. "The Hollow Men," however, proves to have many offerings for a reader in and among itself. The epigraph contains two pertinent references (http). First, "Mistah Kurtz -- he dead" is an allusion to Conrad's Heart of Darkness. In his novella, Conrad portrays the…show more content…
Although difficult to discern exactly what is going on and where in the poem, the reader easily perceives the overall feeling of the hopelessness in just the opening lines, "We are the hollow men / We are the stuffed men"(lines 1-2) establish a grim feeling of emptiness. Images like "This is the dead land / This is cactus land…Under the twinkle of a fading star" (lines 39-44) create a bleak, dry, desert land setting. The theme of the poem parallels those of Conrad's Heart of Darkness (Smith). The degradation of ritual (religious or otherwise) and the emptiness or reduction of human to childish behavior is parallel concepts in both pieces. Part I of the poem describes the insignificance of the "hollow men." Part I gives the vague setting and shows the request of the hollow men to be viewed as empty; "Remember us…not as lost / Violent souls [which Kurtz and Fawkes both were], but only / As the hollow men" (lines 15-18). It also introduces two motifs, that of eyes and kingdom. "Those who have crossed / With direct eyes, to death's other Kingdom" (line 13-14) is an allusion to Dante's Paradiso (Bowler). Kingdom with a capitalized K may refer to Heaven (although all references to a "kingdom" do not), and those with "direct eyes" are allowed to go there and become blessed. "Eyes" in the poem refer to those of Charon in Dante's Inferno (Williamson, 157). With the line, "Eyes I dare not meet in dreams" (line 19) the
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