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Poetry is not a turning loose of emotion but an escape from emotion it is not the expression of personality but an escape from personality -TS Eliot Being an expatriate TS Eliot was extremely affected by World War I and as a result his writings were blatantly dominated by his cynical views of the world around him Constructed in 1925 Eliots poem The Hollow Men was one of many depressing pieces that had evolved during the period between both World Wars Its a poem that evokes a sense of hopelessness within society assuring his fellow men that they will get lost in it or be defeated by it His overall pessimistic claim being that our world is corrupt Generally Eliot is disgruntled by the profound imperfections in men within his social order which include two-facedness laziness and indifference Hes not pointing fingers but rather warning us that were all empty vessels living in a meaningless and negative world This claim is supported by Eliots usage of vague and abstract decaying imagery and repetitive references to symbolic words such as drought dreams and death The poem consists of five segments all of which focus on the subject of human nature in this world and on the relationship of this world to another the world of death or eternity The first part begins We are the hollow men We are the stuffed men Leaning together Headpiece filled with straw Alas Instead of focusing on one main character Eliot refers to every man or any man by using the reference hollow men Since the hollow men possesses a headpiece filled with straw a picture of a scarecrow denied a brain is envisioned Without intelligence and common sense the stuffed men are basically helpless men tied to their posts Eliot chooses despair as the only alternative possible in
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