ABSTRACT. The question that comes to mind when reading T.S. Eliot’s poetry is: when one finds over-statements in an avaricious, elliptical poet’s work, should one take them for granted? Is his clarity our own? Do we mean the same things when we use the same words? With this question in mind (a question indeed: no intention of producing out of a cap the unexpected image of Eliot the atheist), I have attempted here some willful mis-readings of Eliot’s religious over-statements. I have been trying to decide whether, after years of reading and re-reading Eliot’s poems, instead of merely darting out ‘here is a religious poet’, it would be more accurate to say, here is a poet and a man faltering between belief and the need to believe, between belief and wishful thinking. pp. 39-56.

Keywords: misreading; overstatement; understatement; religious poet

Lidia Vianu
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University of Bucharest, Romania

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