Confessions of a Literary Romantic

What is the value of great literature in an age of intrusive technology, endless distraction, and the impossible perpetual pursuit of fleeting pleasure? This notwithstanding the concerted and intense action of the professoriate and professional literary class, critics and their pupils, who cull and destroy the greatness of the arts in the name of multicultural … Continue reading Confessions of a Literary Romantic

The Erotic Cosmos of John Milton’s “Paradise Lost”

Is John Milton a man for our time or all time? The blind and pugnacious, indeed, radical, English poet arguably wrote the greatest epic in the English language. While claiming to “justify the ways of God to men,” Milton’s remarkable poem is not only a window into the battles of early modern English civilization, it … Continue reading The Erotic Cosmos of John Milton’s “Paradise Lost”

Dante’s Inferno: Understanding Hell

Dante’s three-part epic poem the Divine Comedy, or Commedia, is one of the most influential and dense works of poetic literature in the Western tradition.  Building off Homer and Virgil, and influencing the likes of Chaucer, Milton, Blake, and Tennyson, as well as bringing to popular consciousness and form the modern Italian language, Dante’s epic delves into … Continue reading Dante’s Inferno: Understanding Hell

Literary Tales Ep. 3: Greek Theogony and Theodicy

In this episode of Literary Tales, we examine the dialectical development of Greek theogony and theodicy from Hesiod and Homer down through Pseudo-Apollodorus with concluding remarks on this tradition's supersession by Virgil. In starting from Hesiod's Theogony and exploring the role of the gods, their birth and divine decrees, through Homer and the Bibliotheca, I … Continue reading Literary Tales Ep. 3: Greek Theogony and Theodicy

Literary Tales Ep. 2: Sex, Civilization, and the Epic of Gilgamesh

In our concluding lecture on the Epic of Gilgamesh we explore the person of Enkidu and the roles of sex, marriage, and friendship in the formation of civilization. This lecture includes commentary on Aristotle, Catholic sexual ethics, and Camille Paglia to help shed insight into the perplexing and most interesting character of the Sumerian epic: … Continue reading Literary Tales Ep. 2: Sex, Civilization, and the Epic of Gilgamesh