Into our First World: Schopenhauer, Wagner, and the Music of the Will in Four Quartets

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceeding with ISSN or ISBNChapter


While all poetry partakes to some degree in both visual and aural dimensions, Eliot’s Four Quartets examines this relationship in a particularly deliberate way, continuing a philosophical conversation between Schopenhauer, Wagner and Symons. This dialogue is connected with a Romantic concern with painting and music, reflecting contemporary ideas of the beautiful and the sublime and the growing association of the sublime with music. Despite extensive consideration of the role of music in Four Quartets, Eliot's poem has not been read in the light of this nineteenth-century inquiry into the relation between music and the arts. In particular, the Schopenhauerian influence on Eliot’s aesthetics explains the association in his poem between music and a metaphysical reality that lies beyond appearance.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Edinburgh Companion to T. S. Eliot and the Arts
EditorsFrances Dickey, John Morgernstern
Place of PublicationEdinburgh
PublisherEdinburgh University Press
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)9781474405300
ISBN (Print)9781474405287
Publication statusPublished - 30 Jun 2016

Publication series

NameEdinburgh Companions to Literature


Dive into the research topics of 'Into our First World: Schopenhauer, Wagner, and the Music of the Will in Four Quartets'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this