Analysis of a Passage from T.S. Eliot's the Waste Land

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Analysis of a Passage from T.S. Eliot's the Waste Land

T.S. Eliot writes very deliberately, including just the right details and organizing the poem so that each phrase and section is arranged in the most effective way possible. The following passage is from Eliot's The Waste Land:
There is shadow under this red rock,
(Come in under the shadow of this red rock),
And I will show you something different from either
Your shadow at morning striding behind you
Or your shadow at evening rising to meet you;
I will show you fear in a handful of dust (25-30)
This passage seems to be strategically placed after several lines that allude to a passage from Ecclesiastes 12 of the Bible and directly before a number of allusions and examples that illustrate the "fear in a handful of dust" (Eliot 1-76). To completely understand the meaning of the passage above, the context in which it is used and the allusions that are employed must first be recognized and understood.
First, the several lines preceding the above passage allude to Ecclesiastes 12 of the Bible which portrays feelings of hopelessness and of meaninglessness; meanwhile, the selected passage contains a small sense of hope as well as an invitation to the reader to see what Eliot sees. "A heap of broken images" or "And the dry stone no sound of water" are both phrases included in the preceding lines that lack a sense of hope and that support the allusion to Ecclesiastes 12 in which "Everything is meaningless!" (Eliot 22, 24) (New International Version, Eccl.12). Following these lines that portray hopelessness is the passage written above that first seems to offer a small ray of hope by announcing "There is a shadow under this red rock" (Eliot 25). But even in that phrase lies a hint of something ominous or foreboding with the word "red."
Eliot, or the speaker of Eliot's poem, seems to be inviting the reader into…...

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