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How Milton Works. The Belknap

Title

How Milton Works. The Belknap

Files

Excerpt

How Milton works “from the inside out” is the foremost concern of Fish’s book, which explores the radical effect of Milton’s theological convictions on his poetry and prose. For Milton the value of a poem or of any other production derives from the inner worth of its author and not from any external measure of excellence or heroism. Milton’s aesthetic, says Fish, is an “aesthetic of testimony”: every action, whether verbal or physical, is or should be the action of holding fast to a single saving commitment against the allure of plot, narrative, representation, signs, drama—anything that might be construed as an illegitimate supplement to divine truth. Much of the energy of Milton’s writing, according to Fish, comes from the effort to maintain his faith against these temptations, temptations which in any other aesthetic would be seen as the very essence of poetic value. Encountering the great poet on his own terms, engaging his equally distinguished admirers and detractors, this book moves a 300-year debate about the significance of Milton’s verse to a new level.

Description

vii, 616 pages ; 25 cm

ISBN

0674004655

Publication Date

2001

Publisher

Harvard University press

City

Cambridge, Mass

Keywords

John Milton, 1608-1674, Criticism and interpretation

Disciplines

Arts and Humanities | English Language and Literature

Comments

Includes bibliographical references (p. 575-604) and index.