[Milton-L] Areopagitica audio reading on iTunes

Jason Kerr aelfric at gmail.com
Thu Sep 3 14:08:48 EDT 2009


I also love this idea, and as it happens at least one venue exists for
making collaborative audio versions of works in the public domain:
librivox.org. Some Milton materials, including Areopagitica, are already
available.

The trick here will be navigating the "public domain" issue, which would
seem to preclude using the Columbia, Yale, or any subsequent editions
(unless they were licensed in a way that permitted the free [as in beer]
distribution of audio versions, which seems unlikely--even the Creative
Commons license for the Milton Reading Room at Dartmouth seems to preclude
this). The obvious solution is using a pre-1923 American edition. (I don't
pretend to know anything about the British or any other system of public
domain, not to mention the status of works preserved in images on EEBO.)

Of course, someone with a stronger legal head than mine will probably have a
clearer sense of the issues here. All I know is that the law in this area is
currently quite contentious--witness the flap about the Kindle's capacity to
read books out loud, on which see:

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/02/25/opinion/25blount.html?_r=1&scp=1&sq=roy%20blount&st=cse

I don't mean to suggest that this fine enterprise is doomed; I just want to
enjoin due legal caution, which, for all I know, David Ainsworth has already
exercised.

In the spirit of the long legal tradition of ensuring that one's own
personal hindquarters are securely covered,

Jason Kerr

On Thu, Sep 3, 2009 at 1:36 PM, Campbell, W. Gardner <
Gardner_Campbell at baylor.edu> wrote:

> Great idea, David. May I take up The Reason of Church Government and An
> Apology for Smectymnuus?
>
> I may do yet one more version of Areopagitica just for the love of it.
>
> Gardner
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: milton-l-bounces at lists.richmond.edu [mailto:
> milton-l-bounces at lists.richmond.edu] On Behalf Of David Ainsworth
> Sent: Thursday, September 03, 2009 11:57 AM
> To: John Milton Discussion List
> Subject: [Milton-L] Areopagitica audio reading on iTunes
>
> I have found that students have trouble following Milton's prose.
>
> In the belief that hearing his prose read aloud might help students with
> their comprehension, I have started to record readings of his work.
> They will be available as I complete them via the University of
> Alabama's iTunes page.  If I can sneak a little Milton onto a student's
> Shuffle, I will be content.
>
> As I started work on this recording, Internet Archive posted a complete
> reading of Areopagitica on their site.  I haven't listed to the entire
> audio, but I thought I'd provide a link as some may prefer this version:
> http://www.archive.org/details/areopagitica_0806_librivox
>
> Here's a direct link to my reading of Areopagitica on iTunes:
>
> http://deimos3.apple.com/WebObjects/Core.woa/Browse/bama.ua.edu.2427612186.02427612191.2427750349?i=1403523058
>
> Or, if that link is too unwieldy, you can reach this recording and
> future ones from this page:
> http://edificeproject.ua.edu/?page_id=47
>
> Next on my slate will be "Of Education," which may be also be of general
> use.  I expect there will be fewer takers for an audio version of
> Eikonoklastes, but one will be in the cards at some point in the future,
> I hope, along with the rest of Milton's prose output.  (I expect some of
> these projects will need to be group efforts.)
>
> If anyone is interested in undertaking a recording, or part of one, feel
> free to e-mail me at dainsworth at bama.ua.edu.
>
> David
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-- 
The purpose of poetry is to remind us
how difficult it is to remain just one person,
for our house is open, there are no keys in the doors,
and invisible guests come in and out at will.

          —Czeslaw Milosz, from "Ars Poetica?"
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