Friday, November 14, 2008

SEXUAL PERVERSION DEPICTED IN ELIOT’S “THE WASTE LAND”

Abstrak

Hubungan sex merupakan kegiatan sakral yang dilakukan dengan penuh kasih sayang oleh pasangan suami istri untuk melanjutkan keturunan. Namun pada “The Waste Land” karya T.S.Eliot, sex telah berubah fungsi. Sex digunakan sebagai alat pemuas birahi, obat menghilangkan stress dan bahkan diperdagangkan sebagai barang komersial untuk memperoleh keuntungan materi. Penyimpangan sex tersebut menyebabkan kemandulan peradaban modern. Eliot menyerukan pembersihan spiritual sebagai solusi masalah tersebut. Namun masyarakat modern tak terketuk hatinya karena terbius oleh kenikmatan duniawi semata.

Keywords: sexual perversion, moral values, guilty love, sex exploitation

INTRODUCTION

According to Eliot, sex is an important aspect of life. It is an expression of love and a means of procreation. But in modern society, sex has been perverted from its proper function and is utilized for animal pleasure and monetary benefits. Easy sexual relation could be found among all sections of the society.

Eliot cites the instances of guilty love in the first section of the poem with reference to Waqner’s opera Tristan and Isolde. Then he goes to another guilty love of the hyacinth girl.

In the section of Game of Chess we are introduced to sexual violation in high-class society where a lustful duke seduced a young married-woman. Sex also prevails among the lower class of society. Eliot mentions the story of Lil and the experience of three daughters of Thames. Another example is that of mechanical sex relation between the typist girl and her boy friend. A homosexual relation is exemplified by Mr. Eugenides. Eliot sums up the story of European lust through the words of St. Augustine.

To carthage then I came
Burning burning burning burning
(Lines 307-308: The Waste Land)

Eliot means that the whole of Europe is being destroyed by the fire of sexuality.

DISCUSSION

Guilty Love
Sex occupies a very prominent place in human life. At one time sex was considered as a means of human development. Unfortunately in modern time, sex has become an animal urge without any moral or social commitment.

Eliot gives two examples of guilty love or the pain of satisfied love. The poet refers to the story of Tristan who had a guilty passion for Isolde in Waqner’s opera Tristan and Isolde.

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