Milton and Heresy

Overview

It is distinctly paradoxical that John Milton—who opposed infant baptism, supported regicide, defended divorce and approved of polygamy—should be heard as a voice of orthodoxy. Yet modern scholarship has often understated or explained away his heretical opinions. This collection of essays investigates aspects of his works inconsistent with conventional beliefs, showing how Milton, as poet, thinker and public servant, eschewed dogma and regarded indeterminacy and uncertainty as ...

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Overview

It is distinctly paradoxical that John Milton—who opposed infant baptism, supported regicide, defended divorce and approved of polygamy—should be heard as a voice of orthodoxy. Yet modern scholarship has often understated or explained away his heretical opinions. This collection of essays investigates aspects of his works inconsistent with conventional beliefs, showing how Milton, as poet, thinker and public servant, eschewed dogma and regarded indeterminacy and uncertainty as fundamental to human existence.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"These outstanding essays dislodge the tenacious assumption that Milton's religious thought is orthodox." John Childs, Albion

"...splendid..." Larry R. Isitt, Church History

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521630658
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 9/1/1998
  • Pages: 284
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Table of Contents

Introduction Stephen B. Dobranski and John P. Rumrich; Part I. Heretical Theology: 1. Milton on heresy Janet Mueller; 2. Milton's antiprelatical tracts and the marginality of doctrine Thomas N. Corns; 3. How radical was the young Milton? Barbara K. Lewalski; Part II: Heresy and Consequences: 4. Milton's arianism: why it matters John P. Rumrich; 5. 'Elect about the Rest': theology as self-representation in Milton Stephen M. Fallon; 6. Milton's kisses William Kerrigan; Part III. Heresy and Community: 7. Licensing Milton's heresy Stephen B. Dobranski; 8. Milton and the rationale of insulting John K. Hale; 9. Treason against God and state: blasphemy in Milton's culture and Paradise Lost David Loewenstein; 10. The politics of performance in the inner theatre: Samson Agonistes as closet drama Elizabeth Sauer; Part IV. Readers of Heresy: 11. Asserting eternal providence: Milton through the window of liberation theology Joan S. Bennett; 12. Milton's transgressive manoeuvres: receptions (then and now) and the sexual politics of Paradise Lost Joseph A. Wittreich.

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