16 January 2013

My new book

I am pleased to announce the publication of my new book. Its title is: 


It has taken me several years to complete it, and it is the result of countless hours of reading John Milton´s prose texts and his poems.

John Milton (1608-1674) is one of those authors who do not leave anybody impassive. Anyone who has read any of his poems or prose tracts is likely to either love or hate Milton, but very rarely do his readers remain indifferent to his words. His writings have provoked strong and even contradictory feelings in men, in women, and in entire governments.

The book elaborates in detail on the importance of Milton’s feminine characters in both, his poems and his prose. His approach to the feminine gender in his work is very much defined by the historic moment he lived in and by the religious influence of the Puritan movement he belonged to, with the Bible as his keystone. His approach to the feminine gender and the way he depicts it inspires the reader to analyze every bit of it and to reach individual conclusions even if these are contradictory.

Milton’s approach to religion, poetry, politics, and education make him depict the feminine gender in different ways, and consequently, Milton himself is a catalyst that merges the roles of a poet, a priest, a historian, a politician, and combines other features as well that make of him a literary man whose influence has survived more than four hundred years. His convoluted but sensuous poetry and his bulky but powerful prose have made of him a figure necessary to understand the literature of his time and his influence on those who followed him.

Milton’s readers witness the strong presence of Eve in all his work, but Milton’s faithful readers also notice that she is not the only female character that has something to say. My work has been an attempt to conduct such a faithful scrutiny and elaborate on other feminine characters whose presence is vital for the understanding of Milton’s views on the feminine gender and related issues. More to the point, his other women also share different roles which are extraordinarily powerful and we as readers must analyze every single trait of them and put them together in an attempt to see where Truth lies. From the very beginning of his/her encounter with Milton’s poetic work, the reader is introduced to supernatural female creatures that come from the mythological world to bless the author and to direct him in each of his poems; Milton’s readers notice the strong presence of good and evil biblical female protagonists whose pedagogical role is too strong to be avoided: the goodness and loving examples of Esther, Ruth and Sarah as opposed to the evilness of Dalilah or the sinful Eve.

Milton’s convoluted style does not mean that his readers are not moved into action. Music, rhythm and the power of his feminine characters in unison are strong enough to get inside people’s hearts and move them emotionally. His style and technique shake people’s reasoning faculties and encourage the reader to decide, to gather the scattered pieces of truth that abound in his work and put them together according to their own consciences. His feminine protagonists, no matter whether they are alive, dead, or belong to a superior world, display contradictory features for the sake of shaking people’s consciences.

Milton’s reader becomes Milton’s pupil who is to distinguish between the aesthetic and the didactic elements to get the most out of each poem and tract. Hence, the aesthetic and pedagogical elements hidden in his relationship with his three wives and daughters, the muses, the graces, the goddesses, the virgin Lady, the sirens, Dalilah, Queen Esther, Miss Davies, the nymphs, the Spartan women, Leonora Baroni and Eve have much to do with the reader’s involvement in Milton’s teaching process. Muses and Graces, Serpents and Sirens, virgins wise and pure…, Milton’s other women as well as his countless references to other feminine characters and characteristics are nothing else than scattered pieces of Milton, the teacher’s Truth, that the reader-pupil must put together to reach his/her own conclusions, even if these are contradictory, just like Milton himself.

I hope you enjoy it.

2 January 2013

2013

I´d like to be positive, but the more I watch the news on TV the more I realize that this year is not going to be an easy one. Unemployment seems to be one of the most important problems that we are going to face this year no matter where we live in. If there is unemployment, there is no money and people cannot pay their rents, credits or mortgages. If we cannot pay our debts, we will lose our belongings. If we lose our belongings, we have a problem, a big one, because noone will help us. Banks will keep it all and we will end up with nothing. Banks will not be able to resell all those flats, cars, premises and will lose plenty of money. Consequently, crisis will end up in a megacrisis with no way out. 

Solution: switch off the TV.
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