The Prufrock Papers
A Hypertext Resource for "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock"

T. S. Eliot T. S. Eliot's poem "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" is heavily intertextual, and hence is well-suited to the medium of hypertext.  This site explores the poem's intertextuality, and offers some contextual resources for its study. 
~ Contents ~
"The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock"
1916-19 Reviews      Eliot's Criticism
Prufrock and Other Observations (1917)
"The Editor in the Machine"
[  Biography of T. S. Eliot  ]  [  Publication History of "Prufrock"  ]
[  The "Magic Lantern" and Cinema  ]


 Read the poem with information on its many links
A Brief Introduction to the Site
    The hypertext platform is ideally suited to the display of intertextual material. Originally, that is why T.S. Eliot’s poem “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock” (seen to the left) was chosen as an occasion for designing a digital edition of a literary text. Its structure is densely allusive and challenging for the electronic editor who wants to display complex intertextual relationships in a manner accessible to all readers.
      A second motivation, besides the one of intertextual display, was to design a digital edition of a literary text that was both academically sound and useful to all levels of readers of Eliot’s poetry. This project began in 1996-97, when there was a dearth of competent and informed digital literary editions or archives on the web.
     Too many hypertexts focussed at that time on stimulating visual aspects of the digital environment at the expense of delivering significant information. Many others sacrificed editorial judgement and sensitivity in an effort to fill editions with everything they could hold. The third goal of this edition was to exploit the advantages of the digital platform without abusing the integrity of Eliot’s text or of the scholarly editing process.
     Initially, this project restricted itself to Eliot’s single poem “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock.” As efforts to display the intertextual personality of the poem gathered momentum, however, it became clear that many influences on the poem had their sources in other texts by Eliot, and vice versa. For this reason, the project gradually enlarged to include the entire 1917 volume Prufrock and Other Observations.
     The project was initiated by Peter Stoicheff, a professor in the English Department at the University of Saskatchewan. With the kind assistance of the English department and the College of Arts & Science he was able to hire a number of graduate students intermittently during the academic year and in the summers; they acquired the necessary skills in HTML and related languages to realize the editorial ambitions of the project.
     As is inevitable given the nature of the collaborative and non-linear nature of the hypertext enterprise, this project is on-going, and was intended from its beginnings to involve graduate and undergraduate students in a variety of ways. Some have helped with the programming, others with the editorial conception and design, still others with the creation of material entered into the edition.

Web page designed by Peter Stoicheff, Tim Drake, Sherry Van Hesteren, Corey Owen and Jon Bath.
Updated by Joel Deshaye and Dave Mitchell
The Department of English, University of Saskatchewan.
Last updated August 23, 1999.
The hypertext is best viewed in Netscape Navigator 3.0 or later versions of Netscape.
There is presently no no-frames version.
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