[Milton-L] "the only great Christian writer this nation has produced"

Michael Gillum mgillum at unca.edu
Thu Jan 21 13:35:06 EST 2010


Eliot was "produced by this nation." as per the stipulated characteristics.
He was also a great and orthodox Christian writer. Wouldn't Hawthorne also
qualify? I really like Flannery O'Conner, but the claim looks pretty silly.

Michael

On Thu, Jan 21, 2010 at 12:04 PM, Hannibal Hamlin <hamlin.hannibal at gmail.com
> wrote:

> The problem with all such value judgements is that they depend upon various
> definition arguments. From reading Flannery O'Connor, for instance, I'd be
> inclined to seriously question her "orthodoxy." Indeed -- an idle thought --
> might "greatness" and "orthodoxy" usually exist in writers in inverse
> proportion? But then of course "greatness" is even more difficult to define.
> And what, moreover, makes a writer "religious"? I'd make a case for both
> Whitman and Dickinson as religious, though they were far from orthodox.
> Certainly great. I suppose we could even debate the parameters of
> "American." What about T.S. Eliot?
>
> Hannibal
>
>
>
>
> On Wed, Jan 20, 2010 at 6:01 PM, Horace Jeffery Hodges <
> jefferyhodges at yahoo.com> wrote:
>
>>  I see that I've not been clear. I wasn't contesting the exclusion of
>> Milton from *American* writers, merely wondering if the same logic,
>> applied to Milton, would exclude him from a list of Christian writers
>> generally.
>>
>>
>> But I seem also to have been wrong about Professor Wood being on this
>> list. Must be some other list. Apologies for the distraction. Now back to
>> the program "Cosmos," which is still in progress . . .
>>
>>
>> Jeffery Hodges
>>
>>  ------------------------------
>> *From:* "Campbell, W. Gardner" <Gardner_Campbell at baylor.edu>
>> *To:* John Milton Discussion List <milton-l at lists.richmond.edu>
>> *Sent:* Thu, January 21, 2010 7:51:33 AM
>> *Subject:* Re: [Milton-L] "the only great Christian writer this nation
>> has produced"
>>
>> Ralph's not on this list (so far as I know). In the interview, he's
>> speaking of US writers only. Still a debatable point, of course.
>>
>> Gardner
>>
>> Sent from my iPhone
>>
>> On Jan 20, 2010, at 4:37 PM, "Horace Jeffery Hodges" <
>> jefferyhodges at yahoo.com<mailto:jefferyhodges at yahoo.com>> wrote:
>>
>>
>> Because I'm a Baylor alumnus, I receive regular emails from that
>> university on things that Baylor professors are doing. This morning, I
>> received an email informing me that our Milton List's very own Ralph Wood
>> has appeared on the PBS "Religion & Ethics Newsweekly" in a segment about
>> Flannery O'Connor:
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>> <
>> http://www2.baylor.edu/baylorproud/2010/01/baylor-professors-share-their-expertise-with-pbs-other-news-outlets/
>> >
>> http://www2.baylor.edu/baylorproud/2010/01/baylor-professors-share-their-expertise-with-pbs-other-news-outlets/
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>> Professor Wood appears at about 37 seconds into the segment, and he makes
>> the interesting claim that O'Conner is America's "only great Christian
>> writer" of literature. He later qualifies this remark by adding "orthodox
>> Christian."
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>> I'm curious, then, what Professor Wood might say about Milton. Since
>> Milton was unorthodox in his theology, does that make him not a "great
>> Christian writer"?
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>> I'm not being polemical, by the way, I'm simply curious.
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>> Jeffery Hodges
>>
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>
>
>
> --
> Hannibal Hamlin
> Associate Professor of English
> The Ohio State University
> 164 West 17th Ave., 421 Denney Hall
> Columbus, OH 43210-1340
> hamlin.22 at osu.edu/
> hamlin.hannibal at gmail.com
>
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