Classical Accounts of India: Rome, Greek by R. C. Majam-Majumdar

By R. C. Majam-Majumdar

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65). 35 Pound also shares Freud's sense of the close relation between money and quantifying rationality: in this 'Hell', all qualitative differences have been obliterated by the uniformity of the 'dung-flow '. For the occupants of the 'bog of stupidities', language is no longer a repository of meaning; like money, it engenders duplicity rather than confidence ('nulla fidentia inter eos ' xv, p. 65). It might be said that Douglas's theory has here been transformed into a psychology of money, the economic surplus mutating into the faecal surplus of a barren intellectual life.

This style has the non-lyric 'plasticity' of which Lukacs speaks, and Pound, I think, grasped it as a means of substituting tense intellectual activity for the contemplative distances of the visionary mode . Coupled with the congested 'materiality' of this language, however, is a complex use of time-shifts: Browning interleaves layers of history to allow a flexibility of structure which permits both analysis and premonition. At a crucial moment, the narrative is able to tum back on itself, exposing a whole range of entwined perspectives.

In this way the idea of the job done 'really well', and the 'play' and specificity of knowledge it requires, become a major theme of the first sequence. The reason for Pound's tacit alignment of the artist and the 'spirited' entrepreneur now becomes clearer, for his epic poem was at this stage a project without a predefined end or content, and it was to that extent a kind of gamble, an energetic taking of risks . P" From this point of view his early hostility to bureaucratic rationalism and the monetary 'obsession' helped to determine the form which the poem was to take, since it was precisely the spirit of prudential calculation which Th e Cantos set out to oppose.

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