jamesrovira at gmail.com
Thu Jun 26 09:36:43 EDT 2008
Jason: Thanks for the response. Kierkegaard's views of what makes up
the human is really very much in line with Christian thought from
Origen to Erasmus and later. Body / soul / spirit. Kierkegaard was
completely unoriginal in this. I'd expect Milton to share this view,
or a modified version of it in which the fundamental dichotomy is
between body/spirit and soul is just another word for spirit.
Kierkegaard was more original in the implications he drew from the
idea that we are a synthesis, but even some of these had long currency
-- some of the things he says about time, for example, take Plato as a
starting point. Kierkegaard gets even more original in the
implications for human psychology drawn from the idea of the human
being as a synthesis, but I'm curious how much he might have in common
with someone like Burton. Still, I agree, once we get to
Kierkegaard's psychology K's applicability to Milton becomes less and
less certain, but this is precisely the point where we'd want to use K
the most -- to help us understand Milton's characters.
Tanner doesn't work too hard to justify his use of Kierkegaard in
reading Milton that I recall. He does draw out some biographical
similarities in the introduction and mentions some other similarities,
but it's not a major part of his argument.
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