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Ascent: Philosophy and Paradise Lost

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2018.02.30 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews Tzachi Zamir, Ascent: Philosophy and Paradise Lost, Oxford University Press, 2018, 203pp., $49.95, ISBN 9780190695088. Reviewed by Richard Gaskin, University of Liverpool This is a suggestive but also a very unsatisfying book. Tzachi Zamir discusses a number of respects in which Paradise Lost raises difficulties for Milton's philosophical reader, and he considers how Milton either did respond to these in the poem and elsewhere in his writings, or would have responded if asked. But the discussion remains at a rather superficial level. I shall consider four areas where this especially emerges. At the end of Book II, Satan undertakes his daring mission and flies to Hell's gates. There he encounters the portress Sin, whom he himself had created, and Death, whom he had fathered on Sin. Zamir quotes the initial description of Death (666-73):

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