[Milton-L] help interpret a line

jfleming at sfu.ca jfleming at sfu.ca
Mon Jan 26 07:05:30 EST 2004

I must say I remain somewhat uncomfortable with the suggestion, voiced on this thread by Gardner but widely approved both here and elsewhere, that in the passage under consideration M is demonstrating "the limits of reason." I am uncomfortable with this view because the people who hold it always seem to pair it with the claim that Satan has a bad argument (which I think is in fact the case, for the very simple reason that he uses false premises). But how can M be demonstrating the limits of reason by representing a bad argument? Doesn't that strategy, rather, demonstrate the sovereignty of reason?
J.D. Fleming


Dr. James Dougal Fleming,
Assistant Professor of English,
Simon Fraser University,
(604) 291-4713

Laissez parler les faits.

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