Paradise Lost | Critical Essay by Balachandra Rajan

This literature criticism consists of approximately 17 pages of analysis & critique of Paradise Lost.
This section contains 6,941 words
(approx. 24 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Louis L. Martz

Critical Essay by Balachandra Rajan

SOURCE: “Paradise Lost: The Uncertain Epic,” in Milton Studies, Vol. XVII, 1983, pp. 105-19.

In the following essay, Rajan argues that Paradise Lost is a mixed-genre poem whose primary genre of epic undergoes revisionary treatment in Milton's hands and holds that the work seeks its identity between possibilities of epic and tragedy, or loss and restoration.

The problem of the genre of Paradise Lost seems to have been a problem from the day the poem was published. Dryden may have said that “this man … cuts us all out and the ancients too,”1 but it did not take long for the caution of the critic to make its inroads on the generosity of the poet. In the preface to Sylvae (1685) the objections are stylistic—to the “flats” among...

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This section contains 6,941 words
(approx. 24 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Louis L. Martz