Centre for Languages and Literature

The Joint Faculties of Humanities and Theology | Lund University


A definitive figure within Anglo-American modernism, T.S. Eliot's poetry expresses many of the central tensions and violent dislocations characteristic of life in the post-WWI era. My research approaches the subject of "the divided self" in Eliot's works from a variety of angles. Beginning with the division between "the man who suffers" and "the mind which creates", I go on to discuss the conflict between the self-professed "classicist" and the "romantic"; the divided mind (both subject and object of its own observation); and the antithetical forces of disgust and desire in Eliot's early works. The thesis culminates with a discussion of spiritual exhaustion and fragmentation, versus the longing for wholeness, which precipitated Eliot's conversion to Anglo-Catholicism in 1927. Incorporating perspectives ranging from the philosophical to the neuroscientific, I aim to instantiate Eliot's powerful poetic works within an ongoing dialogue on the contradictory experience of being human.


About the research

Modernism, poetry, the self, philosophy, neuroscience.

Research portal (Lund University)

Charlotte Hansson Webb

Doctoral Student
English Studies
Centre for Languages and Literature

Contact information

E-mail charlotte.hansson_webbstu.luse

Phone +46 46 222 78 52

Room SOL:H332c

Visiting address Helgonabacken 12, Lund

Postal address Box 201, 221 00 Lund

Internal post code 20