Significance of the title The Waste Land

  • Tulika Anand Dept. of English, Jaipur National University, Jaipur, India


Thomas Stearn Eliot was born on 26th September, 1888 at St. Louis Missouri, U.S.A. It is the famous imagist poet, Ezra Pound who encouraged Eliot to compose the poem and Eliot dedicates the poem, “The Waste Land”, to Ezra Pound. The Waste Land draws on a wide range of cultural reference to depict a modern world which is in ruin yet somehow beautiful and deeply meaningful. Eliot uses techniques pastiche and juxtaposition to make his point without having argued them explicitly. As Ezra Pound said, “Eliot truly did modernize himself.”
The Waste Land Eliot’s masterpiece is a long and complex poem about the psychological and cultural crisis that came with a loss of moral and cultural identity after world war I. When the poem was first published it was radically experimented. Eliot presents a sordid image of popular culture with erudite allusions to classical and ancient literature and myths. The title itself indicates Eliot’s attitude towards his contemporary society, as he uses the idea of a dry and sterile wasteland as a metaphor for Europe devastated by war and desperate for spiritual replenishment.

How to Cite
ANAND, Tulika. Significance of the title The Waste Land. IJELLH (International Journal of English Language, Literature in Humanities), [S.l.], v. 6, n. 1, p. 7, jan. 2018. ISSN 2321-7065. Available at: <>. Date accessed: 18 feb. 2018.