[Milton-L] Outreach to Educational Programming Decision Makers

Yuko Nii wahcenter at earthlink.net
Tue Apr 28 13:47:23 EDT 2009

From: Yuko Nii,
Yuko Nii Foundation

As you all know, it has been a great year for us here regarding  
Milton's Paradise Lost. We have received world-wide attention for our  
Milton celebration last October.

Since then we have decided to publish a Paradise Lost broadsheet as a  
"learning incentive" for high school and college students. We ran it  
by Dr. Robert J. Wickenheiser, a renowned educator, and the 19th  
President of St. Bonaventure University. He was ecstatic about the  
idea (see his response below)

We would like to present the concept to educational publishers and  
committees, with a desire to have it distributed. Do any of you have  
any suggestions on how we might go about this? Your help would be  
highly appreciated. We are neophytes at educational publishing, but we  
expect to have more offerings on a range of subjects over the next few  
years. Perhaps you can recommend an agent.

Sincerely, Yuko Nii

What we are offering to schools: An 11 X 17 inch full color  
broadsheet. It is a unique folded broadsheet (folded to 5.5 X 8.5  
inches) that contains the entire synopsized edition of Terrance  
Lindall’s rendition of John Milton’s Paradise Lost. The beauty of this  
edition is that it is complete with exciting images and is very  
inexpensive, such that schools can afford to hand it out free at the  
beginning of the English literature course to all the students in the  
class, inspiring their study of Milton’s work!  Translatable into any  
major language.

 From Dr. Robert J. Wickenheiser:
Dear Terrance,

When I first received the information in your email sent only a short  
while ago (4/20/09), I was genuinely very excited, hopeful that I  
might play some small part in helping you, Yuko Nii, and the Center  
launch what I wish I had had available to me when I taught literature  
in my Abbey's Prep School years ago.  Now that you have sent me my box  
with copies of what you described in your earlier email, I am  
genuinely in awe of what you have prepared for teachers of literature  
in high schools.

I applaud you for providing a new and most exciting manner for making  
Milton come alive for all of (or at least a great many) high school  
students.  As I held your broadsheet in front of me I was transformed  
into that student who sees visually for the first time drawings/ 
illustrations for the great English epic Milton wrote, Paradise Lost,  
a highly visionary epic, doing for England what Virgil did for Italy,  
and Homer for Greece (as briefly stated summary of Dryden’s great  

Your broadsheet (with images beyond compare) are your grand gift to  
all students (of all ages)  – now and in the future.  They are worth  
far, far more than they or anyone, really, could afford to pay.  If  
Milton has been brought to a new life in the 20th century,  
particularly the last half of that century, then surely special  
interest in Milton’s epic will take hold in high school students and  
will prepare those students far more for study of Milton in college  
than perhaps any class of high school students before now.  Thus, not  
only are your images beyond compare, but they are also part of a gift  
beyond compare in the form of the published broadsheets provided by  
the Centre.

I was likewise in awe of your warm and most welcome presentation  
copies to me.

With much esteem and abiding gratitude,

On Jul 12, 2007, at 3:44 PM, elizabeth wrote:
> Dear Terrance Lindall,
> Great Coincidence...it  never happens when trying to locate an  
> artist that
> you reach them on the first try! And thank you for being willing...
> This is to request permission to reproduce your work "A Dungeon  
> Horrible"
> (from your Paradise Lost series) in a forthcoming textbook on  
> literature for
> high school students to be published by Holt, Rinehart and Winston.  
> This
> work would accompany the section on John Milton.
> I attach a permission for for you to fill out and return.
> It is most kind of you to be able to send me the image tomorrow.  
> Would you
> also send me the title, dimensions, medium and your birthdate. I  
> assume the
> credit will be the Williamsburg Art and Historical Center.
> Thank you for all of this and for being able to help so quickly.
> Sincerely,
> Liz Meryman
> Elizabeth Meryman
> Art Consultant
> Carousel Research
> 236 West 26th St
> New York, NY 10001
> cell: 347 668 2184
> email: emeryman at earthlink.net
> <gr12PrefPerm2.doc>

On Apr 15, 2009, at 2:05 PM, Steve Fallon wrote:

> Ross,
> I've attempted a more elaborate answer to these questions in "'To  
> Act or Not': Milton's Conception of Divine Freedom," Journal of the  
> History of Ideas 49 (1988): 425-49.  Here's a short version: For  
> Milton, God can do only good when he acts, but he can choose to act  
> or not.  This distinguishes Milton from, e.g., the Cambridge  
> Platonists, who argued that God necessarily performs the good.  The  
> Cambridge Platonist God must create the world, and must create the  
> world as soon as he can, because this God cannot omit any potential  
> good action.
> A bit more elaboration: The passage just before the first passage  
> you quote contains the answer you need.  Milton distinguishes  
> between external or compulsory necessity, on the one hand, and  
> internal or natural necessity, on the other.  What limits freedom of  
> action, Milton writes (at the top of p. 1155) is "any necessity  
> operating externally upon a given cause," which "makes it produce a  
> certain effect or limits it from producing other effects" (my  
> emphasis).   The perfect freedom of God is a freedom from any  
> external influence or compulsory necessity.
> For God to be able to will evil would, in Milton's view (and not in  
> his alone), amount not to freedom but contradiction.  Because God's  
> nature is good, the free expression of that nature is in willing the  
> good.  If one views God's inability to contradict himself as a  
> limitation of his freedom, then this God is not absolutely free.   
> But neither Milton nor the tradition generally view this inability  
> as a restriction of freedom.
> There's more in the essay, but this is a start.
> In terms of analogy to human freedom, the absolute freedom of God  
> resembles the freedom of one who is confirmed in goodness and no  
> longer bound to sin (in the state of non posse peccare) and not the  
> freedom of the one in this world, either before or after the fall,  
> who can choose good or evil.
> It's good to hear that you're using the edition. If you (or anyone  
> else) find any typos (and there are some), I'd appreciate your  
> dropping me a note.
> All the best,
> Steve Fallon
> On Apr 15, 2009, at 1:14 PM, Ross Leasure wrote:
>> Dear mentors and colleagues,
>> I write humbly to ask for some guidance (as I plow through excerpts  
>> of
>> De Doctrina Christiana from the recently published Modern Library
>> edition) in preparation for teaching tomorrow's class.  I'm sure I'm
>> missing something, my own feeble faculties insufficient to comprehend
>> Milton's logic.  My particular difficulty is in wrapping my mind
>> around what seems to me a problematic contradition presented briefly
>> in the following to passages:
>> "In God a certain immutable internal necessity to do good,  
>> independent
>> of all outside influences, can be consistent with absolute freedom of
>> action" (c. 3; p. 1155).
>> "God always acts with absolute freedom, working out his own purpose
>> and volition" (c. 5; p. 1174).
>> If an immutable God, of internal necessity, can only do good, is he
>> not limited in his freedom since he cannot will evil?  How can God's
>> incapacity to will evil be "consistent with absolute freedom of
>> action" in other words?  Or could God will evil, but chooses not to?
>> Wouldn't that change the essential nature of Milton's good God?
>> I'm anticipating that some of my students might ask similar  
>> questions,
>> and I don't yet have sufficient understanding to untie what seems to
>> me a indissoluable logical knot.  I look forward to reading whatever
>> correction or redirection will be forthcoming regarding my inquiry.
>> Thank you in advance for your assistance and consideration.
>> -- 
>> T. Ross Leasure
>> Dept. of English
>> Salisbury University
>> Salisbury MD 21801
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