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Durham University

Department of English Studies

Event Archive

This is an archive of past events within the Department of English Studies. Please see our current events for forthcoming activities.

Some of our public events are recorded and are available as podcasts via our Research English At Durham blog.

William Blake's London and Eliot's Waste Land

18th May 2016, 17:30 to 18:45, Seminar Room, Hallgarth House, Professor Seamus Perry

An Inventions of the Text seminar.

There are many presences in The Waste Land, whose diverse importance has been drawn out by commentators: Shakespeare, Dante, Virgil, Baudelaire. Another voice behind the poem is that of the English Romantic poet William Blake, who, with Baudelaire, is Eliot's great precursor as the poet of the infernal city; but Blake's poetic identity as a Londoner makes him an especially significant figure. As well as that, Blake possessed for Eliot what he called, in a memorable essay written while The Waste Land was brewing, "the unpleasantness of great poetry". What did Eliot learn about the uses of unpleasantness from Blake?

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Research in English At Durham (READ) blog showcasing the the literary research emerging from the Department of English Studies


We host a large number of conferences, lectures and seminars each year, many of them open to the public. Find out more on our Events page.


Many of our public lectures, seminars and conferences are recorded, and can be listened to as podcasts.

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