Pondering Satan's Shield In Paradise Lost Analysis

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The epic, Paradise Lost, is an interesting fictionalized interpretation of the story of Adam and Eve in the book of Genesis in the Bible. John Milton, author, writes about the character of Satan with aspects of being victimized, becoming the potential hero, and looking for the way to freedom from God, the tyrannical ruler. Milton also gives the characters of Adam and Eve a greater sense of awareness to their surroundings and the development of actions other than devoting their lives to worshiping and serving God. He gives the character of Eve a great sense of self pursuit, because she is in search of self-freedom and encounter throughout the epic; Satan is able to take advantage of her mindset and manipulate her to become separated from God …show more content…
Dobranski is an English professor at Georgia State University. He obtained his Ph.D. in the University of Texas. Dobranski is specialized in John Milton, Renaissance Studies, and textual studies. Dobranski has published and edited multiple books and articles, which includes, but is not limited to, “Pondering Satan 's Shield in Milton 's Paradise Lost”. In this journal article, Dobranski argues “in the context of Renaissance warfare and, perhaps surprisingly, seventeenth-century animal histories, Satan 's shield symbolizes, updates, and subverts his heroic aspirations, and simultaneously it exposes his amphibious nature, creeping from lake to land, and transgressing from heaven” (Dobranski 491). According to Dobranski, it is important to understand that Milton’s mindset in order to accept his interpretation of Satan’s shield. Milton, at the time of writing Paradise Lost, had already accepted monistic concepts of the body and soul. Dobranski makes an intriguing argument that Satan’s fall was not only based in the spiritual sense, but also the physical sense. He argues that Satan’s need for material things is based off of his fall, because when he fell from heaven, he “hardened”, therefore, he is in search of having “hardened” items in his possession to feel powerful, rather than simply returning to God and asking for his forgiveness. Satan losing his aspects of a spiritual being awakened his desire for secular possessions. Dobranski continually argues that Satan …show more content…
Lehnhof is an English professor at Chapman University. Lehnhof obtained his Ph. D in English at Duke University and specializes in William Shakespeare, John Milton, Renaissance Drama, and Modern Philosophy. Of his multiple edited collections and journals written, “Scatology and the Sacred in Milton 's Paradise Lost”, is one of them. In this journal, Lehnhof argues, “Milton 's excremental imagery most often aims at the devil…hell 's excremental features are foregrounded from the very beginning of Book I” (430-31). It is interesting how Lehnhof found scatological humor in the epic of Paradise Lost, because this interpretation is not very clear in the text, if it is not read carefully. Lehnhof explains how Milton states in Book I, that hell was created of subterranean winds, with a stench, and smoke. With this, Lehnhof explains a comical depiction of hell that can be compared to and visualized of a hole of excrement. He later argues, “As the antithesis to Satan, Milton 's God can be seen to exemplify the static, dogmatic hierarchy that Bakhtin sets in opposition to the grotesque world” (435). In essence, this can backup Milton’s depiction of Satan wanting to ruin everything that God creates, since God is described as perfect and Satan as tarnished. If Satan and hell can be compared to excrement, it can allow a better visualization of him being capable of tarnishing what God can make, by spoiling it, but, it is hard to agree with Lehnhof’s interpretation of Satan and

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