[Milton-L] Re: unfallen psychology

James Rovira jamesrovira at gmail.com
Wed Jul 2 09:10:28 EDT 2008


Richard -- thanks for the reply.  This discussion certainly seems to
be validating your view of Milton as one who believed we could reach
perfection in this life.  When I asked, "Was Blake really concerned
with representing an unfallen subjectivity, or was he largely
concerned with representing a Christian subjectivity in a specific
context," I meant to ask about Milton, not Blake, but of course the
question is equally applicable to Blake.  I got a bit ahead of myself.

In my reading of Blake, however, I would answer differently from you.
Los, the artist, is separated from eternity just as Urizen is in The
[First] Book of Urizen.  Reason and Imagination are fallen, even
though imagination serves redemptive purposes.  This is a bit
different from what Blake thought of himself, however.

Jim R

On Tue, Jul 1, 2008 at 6:07 PM, richard strier <rastrier at uchicago.edu> wrote:
> To reply briefly to Jim Rovira (though others, of course,
> should do so as well):
>
> I think that Milton believed that regeneration could be
> complete in our lives.  I think that not only was he not a
> Calvinist, but that he was pretty close to being a Pelagian
> (this ought to get another string going!).  Arminianism, as I
> understand it, was a way of getting the benefits of classical
> ethics into a system with a Calvinist vocabulary.
>
> Re Milton and what English could do, I think the question was
> what he thought poetry could do.  And I think he had a VERY
> high opinion of this (and of his own capacities with regard
> to it).  And I think that, in relation to Eden, he was right
> to have this opinion of himself.  (I've written at length
> about why I think M's vision of/ presentation of Eden is much
> superior, morally and well as poetically, to his vision of
> heaven.)
>
> As to "Was Blake really concerned with representing an
> unfallen subjectivity, or was he largely concerned with
> representing a Christian subjectivity in a specific context,"
> I think you've answered the question in adding, "Or did he
> not see a difference between the two?"  As Mrs. Blake said,
> William spent much of his time in heaven.
>


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