TS Eliot is one of the most prolific poets of the 20th century. Eliot wrote “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock” between February 1910 and July 1911. When this poem first came out it was apart of a few different anthologies, but was never published as a standalone edition. Many people who study Eliot or have done art history dissertations have all said that this one poem was the beginning of his career as an influential poet.
In order to make The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock a little bit more accessible by modern standards a fine man from Montreal named Julian Peters has developed a webcomic. There are some fantastic illustrations and Peters has really captured elements of the poem that some people might have missed.
For example, there was a lot of air pollution there was in TS Eliot’s time! That whole section about the “yellow” fog crawling around the houses was due to TS Eliot living at a time when London was still best by pea-soupers, thick heavy smogs of air pollution that hung low in the streets, from back in the day when most houses were heated with coal. Pea-soupers were responsible for the Sherlockian foggy aura of London that turns up in literary works of this era. (Since the banning of home coal-fires in 1956, London is no longer foggy.) Just one of many ways that this poem reflects the society of the time… actually the illustrations bring out many other ways too in which the whole poem is anchored to a particular place & time & societal stratum.
Michael Kozlowski has been writing about audiobooks and e-readers for the past twelve years. His articles have been picked up by major and local news sources and websites such as the CBC, CNET, Engadget, Huffington Post and the New York Times. He Lives in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.