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Flashcards in Paradise Lost Deck (37)
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What can Milton be defined as?

an infamous regicide


What is significant about the publication date (1667) of Paradise Lost?

carefully orchestrated- would not have been possible 6 months earlier or later(Fire of London, Dutch burned English ships on the Medway, plague, fall of Clarendon (Lord Chancellor to King Charles)… many publications responded by urging spiritual renewal on a nation that seemed to be experiencing divine displeasure)


when was the execution of Charles I?



what was the interregnum and when was it?

between the reigns of Charles I ending and Charles II becoming king


When were the Divorce Tracts?



What did the Divorce Tracts outline?

that woman was created for man (feminists critics would criticise Milton for this- particularly 21st century/modern day) (highlights Eve created for Adam and therefore not his equal???)
celebrated the sanctity of true marriage


What was Areopagitica 1644?

This is where Milton argued that the responsibility of ones actions and beliefs lies with the individual- therefore suggesting that Eve/Adam are entirely responsible for their own actions, and contradicts/argues against the idea that Eve is manipulated by Snake
It is seen as a defence of free will and freedom of speech
It advocates a sense of belief by testing ones ideas which is what Paradise Lost invites readers to do
Eve's question, "And what is Faith, Love, Vertue unassaid/ Alone, without exterior help sustained" utilitises doctrines of freedom expressed in Milton's Aeropagitica.


What is Milton's view of predestination and free will?

Milton is a puritan- and so his beliefs are rooted in Calvinism. However, ironically Milton denies the existence of predestination and rather adopts an Arminian position- admitting the possible existence of free will
this is highlighted in book III, when Milton states God made man “just and right/ Sufficient to have stood though free to fall.”


What is meant by an Arminian position?

not constrained by predestination
you can freely choose
ability to make own choices and decisions
this belief + Areopagitica 1644 = Eve/Adam are solely responsible and to blame?


what did sun imagery reflect at this time and how does Milton reference it in Paradise Lost to symbolise the fall of Charles?

During the Restoration, the use of sun imagery to reflect and represent the absolute sovereignty of Charles II commonplace and recognised Royalist imagery. Consider “The sun was sunk”.


Why is Paradise Lost considered an attempt to 're-educate the English?'

Margaret Kean
Milton believed that by accepting the Restoration the English people were 'settling for the familiar' and this was 'a form of self-enslavement' and they were rejecting their 'god given right to freedom'


what is important to remember regarding Eve's vanity?

It was traditional to associate women with vanity – link to Eve falling in love with her own reflection.


What does Anna Baldwin argue in regards to equality in Paradise Lost?

Argues that during Book IX Adam and Eve are equals so Adam cannot legitimately control Eve’s actions.


what does Kean state?

“Milton uses the Edenic experience as a means of discussing human nature and free will.”


what does C.S Lewis argue about Eve?

that by giving Adam the fruit Eve commits 'murder'


1712 response to Paradise Lost...

(1712) Addison, The Spectator essays – sets a framework for reading the epic as classical and stylistic rather than theological and political.


what does Christopher Hill recognise?

observes how Milton compares the marriage contract to the political contract between king and people - a common C17th belief. Woman is subordinate and subject to man.


what does Christopher Ricks argue in Milton's grand style?

Milton’s “fluidity of syntax” is deliberately “suggestive.” Consciously designed to exploit ambiguity. as readers we are forced to question if the line between good and evil is really so finate due to sympathetic presentation of Satan and tyrannical presentation of god- reverses traditional feelings


what does B.Rjan argue about Milton's use of unorthodox syntaax?

that it has a 'dramatic and poetic function'
From his slack hand the garland wreath'd for Eve / Down dropd, and all the faded roses shed:
Adam = paralysed measured by the manner in which it passes out into nature, withering the roses at the same time as it withers him. The position of "Speechless" at the start of the sentence and the way it is anchored by the verb "stood" charge the word with the surrounding sense of deadness.


what does Northrop Frye argue about Adam? (1960s)

that he is not heroic for he abandoned his responsibilities (- Eve points out when blaming him for the fall “Hadst thou bin Firm and fixt in thy dissent, Neither had I transgress’d')


Tillyard opinion on the fall...

"Both are essentially fallen before the official temptation has begun."
predestination? undermines Arminian position? Or feels this way because they 'divide labours' = inevitable doom??? EVEN before this- references book 5 and 8.
Eve falls when she dreams of eating from the tree in Book 5, and Adam in Book 8 when he tells Raphael how Eve's beauty is apt to affect in his mind in a way that is dangerous to (...) Reason.


Dennis Burden's views of Satan...

Views Paradise Lost as a "satanic epic" and reveals Satan thinks he is a conventional epic hero


what is Burden's contextual link to Paradise Lost about Satan/God and Charles/Cromwell?

Aligns Satan with Oliver Cromwell and God with King Charles, comparable with the bible and that the King is in a direct descendant and chosen by God.


What is Karen L Edwards view of Adam's authority?

''The debate about whether Eve should have stayed by his side in Book IX is of course a question about whether Adam’s authority is higher than Eve’s.”


what does Diane K. McColley (feminist critic) feel about Eve?

Eve “takes her work seriously” –Eve’s Duty - The garden is an “organic community of interconnected lives to which their healthy minds delightedly respond.” - makes her appear all good


What does Joan S Bennett argue about Eve?

“Eve’s failure comes in not reasoning long or hard enough.”- appeal to vanity.
Yet ironically, Eve is tempted more quick and easily in Genesis in the Bible...


what does James G Turner argue about postlapsarian Adam and Eve?

“adopt a pose of voluntary epicurism and sensual ‘elegance'"
Essentially that “Adam’s gentleness has been changed not into roughness but into the genteel mannerisms of the Court Amorist.”
- context link to critique of Restoration court? Charles' licentious ways...


how can Edmund Burke's theory link to Paradise Lost?

He identifies uncertainty, intensity and terror as central qualities in heightening the aesthetic experience to the level of sublimity.- links to Satanic descriptions
Lewalski also argues Milton uses different literary concepts for effect- 'heroic mode' for Satan and 'tragic mode' to evoke 'pity and terror of human condition' after the fall


Godwin's supporting view of Satan = protagonist, god = antagonist...

(Satan) “he saw no sufficient reason for that extreme inequality of rank and power which the creator assumed.”


Wollstonecraft's view of Milton's view of women...

He seems to “advise (women) to render (themselves) gentle, domestic brutes.” (Eve gardening and sin being she left Adam?) and Divorce Tracts 1643-1645
women formed to 'gratify the senses of man'- Adam reveals he appreciates Eve's taste and always talks of her beauty...