Paradise Lost (Kastan Edition)
Paradise Lost remains as challenging and relevant today as it was in the turbulent intellectual and political environment in which it was written. This edition aims to bring the poem as fully alive to a modern reader as it would have been to Milton's contemporaries. It provides a newly edited text of the 1674 edition of the poem--the last of Milton's lifetime--with carefully modernized spelling and punctuation. Marginal glosses define unfamiliar words, and extensive annotations at the foot of the page clarify Milton's syntax and poetics, and explore the range of literary, biblical, and political allusions that point to his major concerns. David Kastan's lively Introduction considers the central interpretative issues raised by the poem, demonstrating how thoroughly it engaged the most vital--and contested--issues of Milton's time, and which reveal themselves as no less vital, and perhaps no less contested, today.
The edition also includes an essay on the text, a chronology of major events in Milton's life, and a selected bibliography, as well as the first known biography of Milton, written by Edward Phillips in 1694.
" . . .an exemplary job both of presenting the major topics of Paradise Lost and of entering the selva oscura of Milton criticism. . . . Students and scholars alike will appreciate the balanced approach to the complexities, difficulties, and conundrums of Milton's poem and the criticism on it. Kastan's prose is not just lively but chiseled, and it is destined to affect students." --Patrick Cheney, Studies in English Literature, 1500-1900
"Kastan is an exemplary editor, attuned to emerging critical currents, yet steeped in the scholarship of an earlier tradition, aware of the text's provenance and reception, alert to its topicality. His introduction, a model of theoretically informed, politically committed, historically grounded criticism, makes this edition of Paradise Lost all you would expect from one of the most erudite and perceptive figures in the field." --Willy Maley, Modern Language Review
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