J. Alfred was a nihilist
. You just want to pick him up by the lapels
and say WHY
are you WAITING J. Alfred Prufrock
? WHY? Are you waiting
for all this to happen to someone
else?...why are you wistful
? Why are you shy
Shyness is nice, but
Shyness can stop you
From doing all the things in life that you'd like to.
Louder Than Bombs/Ask
J. Alfred was not unlike our friend Bartleby the Scrivener. They were both radically passive, for different historical reasons. Prufrock didn't dare, and Bartleby preferred not to. Neither thought their opinions mattered. Both were wrong.
T.S. Eliot and Herman Melville created these characters as interpretations of the contemporary male psyche (and cautionary tales for same, I should hope).