T. S. Eliot's Life And Accomplishments

1455 words - 6 pages

“April is the cruelest month, bleeding lilacs out of the dead land, mixing memory and desire, stirring dull roots with spring rain.”-T.S Eliot. Eliot was one of the giants of 20th century literature. Eliot helped define the contours of modern poetry in the early 20th century. Most of T.S Eliot’s poems are based on religion. Eliot began to write because of the depression of his father’s death. Eliot’s depression caused him to suffer writer’s block. His depression did not allow him to appreciate the greater things in life, but he still continued to be successful. Eliot, the youngest of seven children, attended Smith Academy when he was sixteen. Eliot was introduced to a girl through one of his friends and later married her, Eliot had many accomplishments (Garraty, John and Mark C. Carnes, eds. Eliot’s Life and Career).
Eliot was born on September 26, 1888 in St. Louis, Missouri. Eliot was the son of Henry Rare Eliot and was the youngest of seven children. Eliot’s siblings were already half grown when he was born. Eliot was a poet, critic, and editor and was known as Eliot Thomas Stearn. Eliot attended Smith Academy in his hometown St. Louis, until he was sixteen. During Eliot's last year at Smith, he decided to visit the 1904 St. Louis world’s fair, where he wrote short stories about primitive life for the Smith Academy Record. In 1905, he left for a year at Milton Academy outside of Boston. Eliot was preparing to follow his brother Henry to Harvard (“Building a Legacy”. Arthur N. Applebee. Evanston: McDougal Little.2006.1062).
Eliot departed for Harvard in 1906, where he impressed many classmates with his social ease. In December 1908, Eliot found a book in Harvard library that changed his life. It was the symbolist movement of literature and introduced him to the poetry of Jules Leforge. By 1909, Eliot’s poetic vocation had been confirmed. Eliot became the secretary of Harvard’s literary magazine. By 1914, Eliot left on a traveling fellowship to Europe and persuaded a number of Harvard’s philosophers to accept him as a potential colleague (“Redemption and Reveal. “Arthur N. Applebee. Evanston: McDougal Little.2006.1062).
In spring 1915, Eliot’s old Milton Academy and Harvard friend Scotfied Thayer introduced him to Vivien Haigh-wood, she was a dancer and a friend of Thayer’s sister. Eliot instantly fell in love with her and charmed her family. In June 1915, he married Vivien at the Hampstead Registry Office. Four years later, things started to go wrong for Eliot, his father died in 1919. Eliot then suffered a nervous collapses, his physicians told him, to take a three month rest cure. Eliot then suffered writer’s block but yet he finished a poem he had been working on for a while called,“ The Wasteland,” it was based on Eliot’s London life (Garraty, John and Mark C. Carnes, eds. Eliot’s Life and Career.) In 1923, his wife Vivien nearly died and Eliot came...

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