The Poetry of John Milton: Poetry and Marriage (Lecture 5 of 24)

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Milton (ENGL 220) This second lecture on Milton's masque probes its complex depictions of virginity and chastity. The version of the masque performed in 1634 is compared with the published version of 1637, with particular emphasis on a monologue on the vanquishing powers of virginity that is created for the latter. The poet's commonplace book, specifically his notes on the self-mutilation of the medieval nuns of Coldingham, is linked to images of the body in the masque. Milton's gradual revision of his initial position favoring life-long virginity is described in detail. 00:00 - Chapter 1. Milton on Virginity, Chastity and the Threat of Rape 11:14 - Chapter 2. A Note on Chastity 16:56 - Chapter 3. Comus and the Lady: The Tension between Virginity and Chastity Complete course materials are available at the Open Yale Courses website: This course was recorded in Fall 2007.
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