The Waste Land Centennial Event

Center for Missouri Studies, 605 Elm Street, Columbia, MO

Students, faculty, and community are invited to celebrate the centennial of T. S. Eliot’s poem The Waste Land on November 3. Born and raised in St. Louis, Eliot went on to become an international literary figure and Nobel Prize winner. One hundred years after the publication of his most famous poem, a new BBC documentary reveals the secret love story behind his poem of personal anguish and alienation.

Join us for a reception, display of creative work, and screening of “T. S. Eliot—Into The Waste Land” on Thursday, November 3, from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at the Center for Missouri Studies, at 605 Elm Street in Columbia.

Director Susanna White, acclaimed for her film adaptations of Bleak House and Jane Eyre, tells the story of Eliot’s poem, drawing from his unpublished letters to Emily Hale, an American drama teacher. Artists and scholars explain the poem’s emotional origins and illuminate its obscurities, bringing this disturbing, epoch-setting poem to life for a new generation of readers. After its broadcast in England a few weeks ago, critics described “Into The Waste Landas “a sensual treat for both newcomers and poetry experts” and “the place to go … for beauty and cheer.”

Students at the University of Missouri have responded to Eliot’s poem in their own voices through poetry, stories, drama, and music. Their contributions will be on display during the reception.