[Milton-L] Is Paradise Lost or Are We Lost?
kanderso at mccallie.org
Thu Apr 16 13:28:50 EDT 2009
Why not go back to Milton's poem on Shakespeare. Have we forgotten
what is to teach a young poet? I was a bohemian abstract. I submit
something I wrote out at the University of Arizona at the NEH. I try
to apply Erik Erikson's "ego identity." Maybe a future paper but i
used some of the material from his Jefferson lecture for a paper.
Shakespeare is a poet.
Milton "On Shakespear": The Poetics of Individuality
When Milton at age 21 writes his rhyming eulogy for Shakespeare, he
sees his own future in the death of Shakespeare who is now entombed
in the Second Folio of plays. At this stage of development behind the
walls of Christ College, Milton, the poet of "On the Morning of
Christ's Nativity", now in his rhyming couplets has a "sense of ego identity."
According to Erik Erikson, "the sense of ego identity, then, is the
accrued confidence that one's ability to maintain inner sameness and
continuity (one's ego in the psychological sense) is matched by the
sameness and continuity of one's meaning for others." Milton finds
in Shakespeare a sameness in their shared identity as English
language poets. There is hope for Milton to claim this relationship
to Shakespeare because how could the Shakespeare of the sonnets
become the master of English drama. How could Milton of the early
poems, especially this rhyming eulogy, become the master of English
epic? Through a study of Milton's later prose, we see the process of
differentiation that allows the Lady of Christ to shed the skin of
heroic worship as he develops his own form of poetic individuality. Kemmer
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