Reading T.S. Eliot

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The poet, playwright and literary critic T. S. Eliot (1888–1965) wrote that ‘genuine poetry can communicate before it is understood’. Taking this to heart, this module begins with suggestions for close-reading two of T. S. Eliot’s poems, including exercises aimed at creating your own responses to his work. Close reading is a way of accessing poetry through experiencing it, rather than primarily approaching it as a source of information. This module then outlines some of the wider influences on Eliot’s poetry, focusing on his interest in dance.