It is undeniably the quality of our experiences and relationships we build with people that determines our attitude to life. Memories and experiences from both positive and negative relationships play a key role in determining our approach to life. Problems such as self-esteem issues arise from negative relationships. Unhealthy self-centred relationships also narrow the mindset and do not encourage healthy thoughts and outlooks. Instead lack of empathy and high levels of indifference are cultured. When positive relationships are lost, grief cripples the human body and the memories of the positive relationship are forever treasured. These notions are explored in T.S Eliot's The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock, Les Murray's Widower in the country , and Brueghel's Carrying of the Cross.
Low self-confidence which arises due to negative interactions and relationships is explored in T.S Eliot's The Love Song of Alfred J. Prufrock. Prufrock's social paralysis is immediately evident through his description of the sunlit sky - the embodiment of joy, warmth and lovely thoughts - as looking "like a patient etherised upon a table". Eliot's morbid choice of "etherised" creates a silent and unmoving atmosphere, much like Prufrock's lack of social activity. He reflects on his previous experiences with women in society, lamenting that he has "measured out" his life with "coffee spoons" and yet although he has let social gathering define his life, he has "known them already… the voices dying with a dying fall". This shows that he only knows rejection too well. The repercussions of such negative experiences is highlighted throughout the poem by his low self-esteem. Prufrock constantly stops to worry about his appearance such as "a bald spot in the middle" of his hair, fretting over the most insignificant details due to his fear of "eyes that fix you in a formulated phrase… I am pinned and wriggling on the wall". He likens himself to a bug on display for the social circles -...
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