Catnip for Poetry Readers: T.S. Eliot’s “The Waste Land” Gets an iPad App That Breaks New Ground

The iPad app for T.S. Eliot’s “The Waste Land” is $13.95, which is a bit pricey as apps go, but what a bargain for poetry lovers!

I downloaded it yesterday and started to play with it. The app really represents the future of the book. I’m very, very impressed. I can imagine, fifty years from now, that what it means to own a book will be something like what it means to own this app: various voices to read the text to you, video performances, and an apparatus of academic criticism accompanying the text.

Below is a YouTube demonstrating the new app’s features. I’m totally sold. Enterprising English professors with technology skills should take note. Though perhaps not with the same production values, you too could make apps with features like this one for out-of-copyright texts that you love and know well.

Why not?

About Santi Tafarella

I teach writing and literature at Antelope Valley College in California.
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3 Responses to Catnip for Poetry Readers: T.S. Eliot’s “The Waste Land” Gets an iPad App That Breaks New Ground

  1. Wow.

    This looks stunning; what a future! I’m constantly frustrated by how publishers, producers and retailers of traditional media (be that books, CD’s, whatever) are so childishly belligerent about new technology, putting more effort into stifling and illegalizing it than they do trying to explore and cultivate it – they operate not in the interests of the consumer, but in the interests of themselves (as is their prerogative). This app, however, seems to be everything that an ebook could and should be – I would HAPPILY spend far more than $13.95 for this and any equivalents. Can you imagine a complete works of Shakespeare? The Canterbury Tales? The potential is astonishing…

    • santitafarella says:

      I agree. I also like the idea of managable bits—apps devoted, like this T.S. Eliot one, to, say, famous short stories, or each of Shakespeare sonnets individually, etc.


  2. andrewclunn says:

    I only have one problem with this. The app will be platform specific. Meaning that your catalogue will be looked to iOS. I would much rather that these apps were written in HTML and javascript.

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