Anxieties of The Waste Land

World War I was the development of all sorts of different kinds of weapons and technologies, but another important development of World War I was the development of new medical illnesses, such as shell shock, that impacted not only those who fought in the war, but also those around soldiers who had developed this mental impairment. In “The Waste Land”, there is an interaction between a man and woman that captures the affects that shell shock had on both the soldiers and the people around these soldiers after the war. The woman is always telling the man that he needs to “HURRY UP” because “ITS TIME” to go. She continues to yell this at him because she is frustrated with his inability to get moving and get things right. The man, however, can’t make note of her frustration because of his shell shock; he doesn’t make any sort of attempt to fulfill her demands even though she is persistent. The Waste Land illustrates that the anxieties developed by soldiers not only affected them but also everyone around them after they returned home.


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