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Critical Essay | Critical Essay by Douglas Trevor

This literature criticism consists of approximately 32 pages of analysis & critique of Critical Essay by Douglas Trevor.
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Critical Essay by Douglas Trevor

SOURCE: Trevor, Douglas. “John Donne and Scholarly Melancholy.” Studies in English Literature 40, no. 1 (winter 2000): 81-102.

In the following essay, Trevor examines Donne's lifelong melancholy, or depression, as an integral part of his religious beliefs.

Donne is in a sense a psychologist.

—T. S. Eliot

Throughout his life, John Donne's prose and poetry are filled with references to, as well as accounts of, his self-understanding as a melancholic.1 If we take his self-professed depressive tendencies as seriously as his devotional meditations, we find that the two are interlinked: Donne often describes ecstatic religious experience with the same metaphors of earthly instability and material metamorphoses he uses to catalogue his melancholic, self-destructive inclinations. Like Søren Kierkegaard, who will praise Christian belief in part because it entails great suffering, Donne is inclined to equate...

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This section contains 9,481 words
(approx. 32 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our Critical Essay by Douglas Trevor - Critical Essay by Douglas Trevor
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