Paid Debts: History of the Expiation of a Spirit

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As is invariably the case, after they had been asked at what price they wanted rooms, it appeared that there was not one decent room for them; one decent room had been taken by the inspector of railroads, another by a lawyer from Moscow, a third by Princess Astafieva from the country.

While Prufrock depends crucially upon a knowledge of a classic novel, one of the cornerstones of Russian culture for which Eliot himself expressed great reverence, here the immortal literary works of Wordsworth, Webster and Donne are contrasted with a Russian figure who, as a dancer, was not strictly creative in the first place, and whose art form, ballet, as a performance art is highly ephemeral. The ageing prima ballerina is now libelled as a high class but also highly artificial prostitute.

Alfred Prufrock , whose heroine Sonia is both prostitute and a figure of redemption for Raskolnikov. Although it slips at will into French, German and the Italian of Dante, has an epigraph in Latin and Ancient Greek, and ends in the Sanskrit of the Upanishads, the poem does not quote anything in Russian, a language which, unlike his contemporaries Lawrence, Mansfield, and Woolf, Eliot does not appear to have known at all.

If one had said, yawning and settling a shawl Oh no, I did not like the Sacre at all, not at all. Women grown intellectual grow dull, [who] … lose the mother wit of natural trull. The Scandinavians bemused her wits, The Russians thrilled her to hysteric fits.

A bright kimono wraps her as she sprawls In nerveless torpor on the window seat; A touch of art is given by the false Japanese print, purchased in Oxford Street. Eliot had certainly read this novel in French translation, as well as Crime and Punishment and The Idiot on the recommendation of Alain-Fournier in Where in Prufrock he had been drawing upon literary sources here he was, in the first instance, responding to a real-life Russian whom he was encountering socially. This, however, appears to have been lost on Eliot, who simply prefers to suggest that she is morally louche and moreover superficial and almost a fake.

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But then, it has been observed that Eliot was actually drawn to the Ballets Russes less by the ballerinas than by the male principals. If Eliot failed to respond to Astafieva, in this he was much at odds with at least one of his heroes from the Ballets Russes, Anton Dolin, who, with Alicia Markova, was to organise a fitting tribute to Astafieva, when she died in the mids, not yet seventy years old. It seems ironically apt given his diffidence towards Astafieva that Eliot should base a whole subsequently deleted section of The Waste Land on the male figure from Greek mythology who was most oblivious to the charms of the female.

This section was inspired by the ballet Narcisse , set to music by and choreographed and danced by Vaslav Nijinsky. Eliot had the opportunity to watch it in Paris. Thus, thanks to the Diaghilev Ballets Russes, the Russian influence appears to have persisted with Eliot into the mids, indeed he even went to the lengths in The Criterion , the quarterly literary journal which he had been editing since October , of reasserting Russian references in The Waste Land which Pound had edited out prior to its first publication.

Further evidence of the continuing importance of both Dostoevsky and a view of the Russian sphere in general is to be found, not in either lines deleted or added, but in the notes which Eliot appended to the poem from its first appearance. Already half Europe, at all events half Eastern Europe, is on the road to Chaos. In a state of drunken illusion she is reeling into the abyss and, as she reels, she sings a drunken hymn such as Dmitri Karamazov sang.

The insulted citizen laughs that song to scorn, the saint and seer hear it with tears. The ideal of the Karamazov, primeval, Asiatic, and occult, is already beginning to consume the European soul.

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That is what I mean by the downfall of Europe. And having identified this essence as coming from a source outside Europe, which is Oriental: And this is the Downfall of Europe. He is far older than Dostoevsky, but Dostoevsky has finally shown him to the world in all his fearful significance. These four, different as they may appear, belong inseparably together. Next notice something very remarkable. Ivan in the course of the story turns from a civilised man into a Karamazov, from a European into a Russian, out of a definitely formed historical type into the unformed raw material of Destiny.

Hesse also identifies the phantasmagorical or delirious quality in Dostoevsky which is perhaps akin to the qualities in the first half of Crime and Punishment which Eliot had exploited in The Love Song of J. There is a fairy-like dream-reality about the way in which Ivan slides out of his original psychology: There is mystical truth in this sliding of the apparently solid brother into the hysterical, into the Russian, into the Karamazov-like.

It is just he, the doubter, who at the end holds speech with the devil! We will come to that later on; We shall not get a grasp of him from a European, from a hard and fast moral, ethical, dogmatic standpoint. In this man the outward and the inward, Good and Evil, God and Satan are united. It shows itself in that Europe is tired, it shows itself in that Europe wants to turn homeward, in that Europe wants rest, in that Europe wants to be recreated, reborn.

And while highly critical of the limitations of Kaiser Wilhelm III, Hesse thinks that, though neither wise nor profound, the German autocrat nevertheless identified accurately the threat to Europe from Russia and the Orient: He certainly did not know the Karamazovs, he had a horror of profound thought, but he had an uncannily right foreboding.

The danger was coming nearer every day. That danger was the Karamazovs, the contagion from the East. What he unconsciously but rightly feared was the staggering back of the tired European spirit to the Asiatic mother. Detailed scrutiny, as above, of the Hesse essay reveals that the idea of Russia as fundamentally and inevitably Oriental and Asiatic is here expressed with unqualified force. We are the hollow men We are the stuffed men Leaning together Headpiece filled with straw, Alas! This has been interpreted in many different ways: He — for there could be no doubt of his sex, though the fashion of the time did something to disguise it — was in the act of slicing at the head of a Moor which swung from the rafters.

It was the colour of an old football, and more or less the shape of one, save for the sunken cheeks and a strand or two of coarse, dry hair, like the hair on a cocoanut. And when Orlando, in the company of Sasha, comes upon a performance of Othello it is, aptly, almost mistaken for a Punch and Judy show:.

The main press of people, it appeared, stood opposite a booth or stage something like our Punch and Judy show upon which some kind of theatrical performance was going forward. A black man was waving his arms and vociferating. There was a woman in white laid upon a bed. Rough though the staging was, the actors running up and down a pair of steps and sometimes tripping, and the crowd stamping their feet and whistling, or when they were bored, tossing a piece of orange peel on to the ice which a dog would scramble for, still the astonishing, sinuous melody of the words stirred Orlando like music.

Turning to Eliot in his capacity as editor of The Criterion , rather than as poet, in the mids Turgenev recurs in his relationship with Russian literature. Back in the second decade Eliot had likened his own early married life to a Dostoevsky novel, but now it is Turgenev whom he alludes to in a prose piece about contemporary Britain published in February This creation of an universal national type, out of the flesh and blood of a fat taciturn country gentleman, brings us to see that Turgenev was not merely an artist, but that he was a poet using fiction as his medium.

To this end it is instructive to compare Jane Austen, perhaps the greatest English exponent of the domestic novel, with the Russian master, and to note that, while as a novelist she emerges favourably from the comparison, she is absolutely wanting in his poetic insight. How petty and parochial appears her outlook in Emma , compared to the wide and unflinching gaze of Turgenev. She painted most admirably the English types she knew, and how well she knew them! I think you might like Turgenev.

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His method looks simple and slight, but he is a consummate master with it. A House of Gentlefolk is good. I come more and more to demand that novels should be well written, and perceive more clearly the virtues and defects of the Victorians. It suggests Authority and Tradition […] It is in fact the European idea — the idea of a common culture of Western Europe. When assessing the importance for Eliot of Russian culture, and in particular Russian literature, the question which inevitably arises is whether Eliot actually considered Russia to be part of Europe.

The answer is ambiguous. When talking of the genetic and ethnic roots of later European culture, Eliot seems to have no problem about including Russia. For example, in the same Commentary, Eliot repeats the idea that Europeans had their racial origins in Scythia, the suggestion being that the Greek and Latin traditions share a common ancestry with the Slavs. How doubly welcome that art should be which can lead us, the foreigners, thus straight to the heart of the national secrets of a great people, secrets which our own critics and diplomatists must necessarily misrepresent.

Europe has always had, and most assuredly England has been over-rich in those alarm-monger critics, watchdogs for ever baying at Slav cupidity, treachery, intrigue, and so on and so on. Turgenev gives us such clues. Look at the river; it seems to beckon us. The ancient Greeks would have beheld a nymph in it.

But we are not Greeks, O nymph! I want light, space … Good God, when shall I go to Italy? Whether the piece can be considered authentic Eliot has been disputed by scholars. Eliot or his wife, may be a matter of debate. Vivien made other contributions to The Criterion on numerous occasions, using pseudonyms most commonly as Feiron Morris, Fanny Marlow and Felix Morrison which surely begs the question of why she did not use a comparable nom-de-plume in this particular instance.

The reader is never told precisely. What is of importance is that they all belong to the echelons of the polite upper middle class, those who make up the guests at country house parties. So they themselves are typically British, or English, as observed by the cosmopolitan American Eliot. But having established that the protagonists are British, there is nevertheless an emphatically Russian frame of reference to this curious little piece.

First we are told that the country house guests are eating pancakes, which are of course, in the form of blinis, a traditional Russian dish. And furthermore Russia keeps obtruding into the conversation:.

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We shall be destitute. They go on spending just as much, living in the lap, and yet their one interest and amusement is to pull down and shatter England. Here we see the idea that conventional European civilisation is besieged, perhaps predictably, by Russia, depicted as a strange, wild, exotic, as it were primitive culture complicated by the development of Bolshevism since the end of World War I, but also, more insidiously, Europe is besieged from within.

It is the spoiled and detached ruling class of what was still the most extensive political unit in the world at this date, the British Empire, who are also to be feared in equal measure. This airs the view that Russia in its present political form constitutes a threat to the European order, presumably implying that it is itself somehow non-European in nature. Through the title he has chosen Eliot is alluding to a Russian literary source, and at the same time reflecting contemporary political anxieties in Britain.

The Letter purporting to come from the leading Bolshevik politician Grigori Zinoviev , suggested that Labour politicians were in league with a Bolshevik Russia still, at this date, before the expulsion of Trotsky, formally dedicated to world communism and perpetual revolution.

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The Macdonald government lost a vote of no confidence in Parliament precipitated by its refusal to prosecute the editor of Workers Weekly for exhorting British soldiers never to take up arms against British workers. Just a matter of months later the General Strike was to take place. Eliot expresses the view that both fascism and communism in practice, whatever their virtues in theory, are failures: Gareth Reeves, in T. It does not matter how this election turns out. No election matters now. The best we can hope for, the only thing that can save us, is a dictator. The dictator suggested as saviour is the first of the fascist leaders, of the Italian variety: Eliot was not alone among intellectuals in Britain in turning enthusiastically to Mussolini.

And Reeves does not pursue the Russian literary resonances of the title given to the Criterion sketch. Against Arnold and his party has arisen in the east a new prophet of culture. Not that it is possible, or even right for any individual to regard such matters from the point of view of pure intelligence alone; but it is well that we should all regard them from that point of view now and then. We may not like the notion of cannibalism or head-hunting, but that it formed part of a distinct and tenable form of culture in Melanesia is indisputable. A revolution staged on such a vast scale, amongst a picturesque, violent, and romantic people; involving such disorder, rapine, assassination, starvation, and plague should have something to show for the expense: Such a cataclysm is justified if it produces something really new: Having conceded that the Russian Revolution might in some degree have been conceivably justified, for all its excesses, if it had represented something culturally new, Eliot goes on to say that it has in practice proved nothing of the sort:.

Eliot in the same vein gives us Agatha and Alexander, living off their dividends, fearing that the reforming Liberals, still at this date given their old label of Whigs, are fatally disabling the established social order, while an additional, external threat comes from Russian Bolshevism. This is quite closely tied to the political and economic circumstances of the first half of the s as regards Russo—British relations. Lloyd George, as leader of a coalition after World War I, had been more conciliatory towards the fledgling Bolshevik regime than was Churchill, very much the instigator of attempts to keep Britain involved in the Russian Civil War on the side of the Whites.

In , however, following huge electoral gains the Labour Party, aided by full male and, by the end of the decade, full female suffrage, was in the process of displacing the Liberals as the radical alternative to the Conservatives. At the same time Turgenev is perhaps a more apt Russian author as a role model.

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For in many ways Turgenev ought to have been the Russian writer par excellence Eliot might have been expected to emulate. Both were cosmopolitans and expatriates, and both were committed to an ideal of universal sophisticated culture rather than any crude nationalism.

Yet, as will be seen below, in the longer term it was still Dostoevsky to whom Eliot was to return as his preeminent Russian influence.

The nineteen thirties saw Eliot move away from a central focus upon poetry as he experimented with drama. And I may urge you … to go and see St. But beyond these formal aspects, in terms of the spiritual experience of the central hero in each of the plays, there persists a clear parallel with Dostoevsky. How can you say that nothing is changed? You all look so withered and young. It goes a good deal deeper Than what people call their conscience; it is just the cancer That eats away the self. I knew how you would take it. So you must believe That I suffer from delusions.

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It is not my conscience, Not my mind, that is diseased, but the world I have to live in. Also like Raskolnikov, by the end of the play Harry has been reconverted to Christianity. He makes his exit: What we have written is not a story of detection, Of crime and punishment, but of sin and expiation. But although this might suggest that we are far removed from the wistful urbanity of Turgenev, while Eliot may have been inspired by Dostoevsky in theory, perhaps things worked out rather differently in practice. It is even possible that Eliot was put in mind of these two canonical Russian novelists by the translations which Koteliansky made for the same edition of The Criterion from four letters exchanged between Leo Tolstoy and the critic N.

Strakhov in the s, where the topic of conversation is Dostoevsky. As with Woolf and Lawrence the two writers in this survey closest to him in age and also in terms of technical innovation , Eliot continued to write after coming through a period of intense interest in, and exploitation of, the Russian myth in The Love Song of J. Perhaps Eliot might have gone on to make more of Turgenev in the mids, had he not embraced Christianity at this point. But in the event, after this brief flirtation, evoking Turgenev in , it was the example of Dostoevsky which was to prove more lasting in his case, and to constitute a renewed source of cultural capital for the American poet.

Imam Nawawi wrote in Sharh Muslim: The hadith that states: Even if it were, it would be possible to establish agreement between the two hadiths and act upon both since scholars who maintain that a person is to pay kaffara on behalf of a deceased deem it permissible to fast on his behalf and those who maintain that a person is to fast on behalf of a deceased deem it permissible to make kaffara on his behalf. A relative may choose either alternative; although it is not obligatory upon him to fast on behalf of the deceased, it is recommended. Any relative of the deceased may fast on his behalf; a non-relative may also fast but only with the permission a relative.

You may choose either to fast on behalf of your mother or feed a poor person for each of her unfulfilled missed fast days. According to Shafi'I scholars, the kaffara consists of one mudd of wheat, dates or any of the staple food of the country. A mudd is half a kilo approximately. You may calculate the number of fast days your mother missed and divide them among you and your siblings, each one is free to choose how to make them up.

If you choose to feed the poor, there is no objection to giving out the value of the food in cash. There is no objection to reciting surat al Fatiha for each deceased separately and donating its reward to him or reciting it a single time for a number of deceased and donating the reward to them. It is permissible to do both by the will of God. One of first printed Ottoman books open to visitors in Dublin after restoration. Dagestani Muslim - world champion in mental arithmetic. Prospects for Islamic financial system discussed in Chechnya. Israel to approve thousands of unauthorized West Bank settler homes.

Contest of poems about Islam held in Tatarstan. Russia to take part in a business mission in Mecca. Rohingya refugees exhibit craftsmanship in Bangladesh. Chelny residents ask authorities to help with freezing mosque. Pakistan rejects downgrading by US in religious freedom. Is it permissible to pay kaffara [expiation] on mother behalf from the money she left? Breaking the fast due to an excuse that lasts until death Scholars concur that a person is not to pay kaffara or make up the fast on behalf of a deceased who broke his fast due to an excuse that continued until his death since the deceased did not neglect to fast and is therefore not blameworthy.

Scholarly opinions on a person whose excuse for breaking his fast ceases but neglects to make up his fast until his death The opinion of the majority of Hanafi and Maliki scholars, the latter opinion of the Shafi'i and the preponderant opinion in the Hanbali school A person is not to make up the missed fast days on behalf of the deceased, but is to give out two handfuls for each missed fast day.

The Ruling You may choose either to fast on behalf of your mother or feed a poor person for each of her unfulfilled missed fast days.