[Milton-L] Is Paradise Lost

Yuko Nii wahcenter at earthlink.net
Tue Apr 14 14:02:08 EDT 2009

Hey guys: I think that what you have here is a great topic for  
exploration and development. Could be an interesting paper at one of  
your conferences if  developed systematically. I will probably develop  
the idea of "greatness" and "genius" in one of my own papers, taking  
some spin from your discussions here. One possible criterion for  
greatness is how much influence the individual or his work has had  
over the human population for good or otherwise. And then there is the  
question, "If Milton had written Paradise Lost and nobody read it,  
would it still be a  great work?" If so, then why? All we do in art &  
literature is measured in the human context. Terrance
On Apr 14, 2009, at 1:42 PM, James Rovira wrote:

> Nancy -- why would you expect a definition of greatness from people
> who think the question is inane?
> Longinus would be a good starting point here, wouldn't it?  Emphasis
> on the experience of reading for reader, seeking qualities within the
> text which provoke that experience, objectifying a subjective
> experience, etc.
> Jim R
> On Tue, Apr 14, 2009 at 1:33 PM, Nancy Charlton
> <ncharlton2009 at hotmail.com> wrote:
>> I can't believe it! A community that includes most of the best and  
>> brightest
>> in Milton studies caviling over a non-issue we'd rap our students'  
>> knuckles
>> for! There has not been one scintilla of definition of "greatness"  
>> or "poet"
>> laid out in this whole discussion. The most that can be said is  
>> that it at
>> least makes us focus on this omission. And maybe not take it too  
>> seriously.
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