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Appears in Collections:Literature and Languages Journal Articles
Peer Review Status: Refereed
Title: Burnt and Blossoming: Material Mysticism in Trilogy and Four Quartets
Author(s): Anderson, Elizabeth
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Keywords: Hilda Doolittle
T. S. Eliot
Second World War
negative theology
apophatic theology
Four Quartets
Issue Date: Sep-2012
Date Deposited: 5-Dec-2013
Citation: Anderson E (2012) Burnt and Blossoming: Material Mysticism in Trilogy and Four Quartets. Christianity and Literature, 62 (1), pp. 121-142.
Abstract: This paper brings two WWII poems into dialogue: H.D.'s Trilogy and Eliot's Four Quartets. Both poems express a creative response to the destruction of war. My reading of Trilogy suggests a material mysticism in which vision and renewal are situated within the natural world, rituals and bodily experience. Bringing this understanding of mysticism to bear on Four Quartets reveals tension between transcendence and materiality. For Eliot, redemption comes through time and location, while for H.D., redemption lies within material particularity. Four Quartets oscillates between an apophatic discourse that seeks to transcend desire and history and an emphasis on material particularities.
DOI Link: 10.1177/014833311206200107
Rights: The publisher has granted permission for use of this work in this Repository. Published in Christianity and Literature, 2012, 62.1, pp121-142.

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