Language of the non-speaking
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The fact that T. S. Eliot’s The Waste Land presents an ecologically and culturally destitute world would appear to make the poem an obvious focus of attention for ecocritics, especially given our current growing environmental problems. This has not been the case, however. I argue that by using the principles of ecology and biophilia, it becomes possible to read the structure of The Waste Land as being a voice in and of itself, a long neglected voice that speaks to the potential redemption of civilization through the recognition of the integral interconnectedness of all things. The structure of The Waste Land is a very intricate web of fragments that mimic the interconnections that form a healthy ecosystem. This structure is in direct contrast to the emptiness and desolation of the poem’s content, reflecting the effects that human conceit has on civilization when a civilization regards itself as being separate from the rest of the natural world.