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Speaking With the DeadExplorations in Literature and History$
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Jurgen Pieters

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780748615889

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748615889.001.0001

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‘Now Let us Go into this Blind World’: Dante, Virgil, Homer and T. S. Eliot

‘Now Let us Go into this Blind World’: Dante, Virgil, Homer and T. S. Eliot

(p.104) Chapter 4 ‘Now Let us Go into this Blind World’: Dante, Virgil, Homer and T. S. Eliot
Speaking With the Dead

Jürgen Pieters

Edinburgh University Press

This chapter considers the contributions of Dante, Virgil, Homer, and T. S. Eliot in the late Middle Ages and the literature of Antiquity. Virgil's words are open to a different interpretation: in his work and in his voice, his four great forebears continue to live on, and the honour that they convey upon him is one in which they themselves also participate. The conversations that Aeneas and Ulysses have in the Underworld are of the utmost importance: they are unique and living testimonies in which the reader is allowed a glimpse of mysteries that are normally kept hidden. Eliot's verse redirected the parasitic logic that he considered detrimental to his own age. The dead deserve gratitude and the poet's constant reminders of their enduring presence.

Keywords:   Dante, Virgil, Homer, T. S. Eliot, Aeneas, Ulysses, Underworld, dead

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