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Milton and Free Will: An Essay in Criticism and Philosophy

Milton and Free Will: An Essay in Criticism and Philosophy (Hardback)

By Myers, William

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First published in 1987. Milton and Free Will is an incisive, ambitious and comprehensive analysis and defence of the concept of free will, using Milton as an example and exemplar. Written with passion, and out of a lifelong engagement with the poetry of Milton and the philosophi...cal and theological problems it encompasses, the book will illuminate both Milton studies and philosophical debate. The author engages with all the major currents of the free will debate, starting with Aristotle and Aquinas and considering arguments advanced by Hume and Kant as well as those of a number of modern philosophers including Polanyi, Kenny, Parfit, Plantinga, Swinburne, Dennett and Davidson. He pays particular attention to the Marxist formalism of Bakhtin, the Catholic phenomenology of Pope John Paul II and the evolutionism of Monod and Sober. He concludes with a rebuttal of the deconstructionism of Barthes, Derrida and Foucault. He claims that all the major difficulties faced by defenders of free will can be overcome if a notion of willing implicit in the work of Milton is properly understood. Freedom as Milton represented and understood it, he suggests, is a condition of mind arising out of inter-personal awareness and not a property or consequence of practical reasoning. He finds supporting evidence for this view in the writings of Newman and in Henry James's The Portrait of a Lady, which he reads as a narrative structurally reversing Milton's representation of the fall of Eve in Paradise Lost. The author systematically analyses and reanalyses key passages in his texts in the light of the many arguments for and against free will, seeking thereby to affirm the validity in principle, and the personal and political importance in practice, of the Christian humanist tradition of which he sees Milton, Newman and the Pope as important (if sometimes misleading) spokesmen.
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ISBN 9780367139575
Released NZ 3 Jun 2019
Publisher Taylor & Francis Ltd
Format Hardback
Alternate Format(s) View All (1 other possible title(s) available)
Series Routledge Library Editions: Milton (part: 7)
In stock at publisher; ships 6-12 working days

Full details for this title

ISBN-13 9780367139575
Stock Available
Status In stock at publisher; ships 6-12 working days
Publisher Taylor & Francis Ltd
Imprint Routledge
Released 3 Jun 2019
Publication Country United Kingdom United Kingdom
Format Hardback
Author(s) By Myers, William
Series Routledge Library Editions: Milton (part: 7)
Category Literature: History & Criticism
Literary Studies: 16Th To 18Th Centuries
Poetry Texts & Anthologies
Number of Pages 266
Dimensions Width: 159mm
Height: 235mm
Dewey Code 821.4
Weight 658g
Interest Age 19+ years
Reading Age 19+ years
Library of Congress Free will and determinism
NBS Text Literary Criticism
ONIX Text College/higher education