- Published: August 30, 2022
- Updated: August 30, 2022
- University / College: University of Massachusetts Amherst
- Level: Masters
- Language: English
- Downloads: 36
Inner Conflict of Satan in Paradise Lost by John Milton Table of Contents Thesis ment 3 Discussion 3 Background 3 Psychological Conflict of Satan4
This thesis, based on the epic poems versed by John Milton in his one of the most reputed literary works titled ‘ Paradise Lost’, intends to depict the psychological change of the fallen angel Lucifer as Satan. The discussion henceforth renders a brief regarding the background of the initial three manuscripts of ‘ Paradise Lost’ and focuses on the inner conflicts which the Satan has been experiencing in his conflict with God.
Enigma pertaining with cosmic relation between God and his son remained a quite fascinating subject of folklore, mythology and literature since the initiation of civilization. Almost attaining the stature of a biblical text, in the year 1667, a series of ten books appeared in the form of an ‘ epic poem in blank verse’ titled as ‘ Paradise Lost’, by John Milton, one of the eminent poets of the seventeenth century.
The epic poem takes the biblical story of the ‘ Fall of Man’, which is followed by ‘ temptation of Adam and Eve’, instigated by the fallen angel Lucifer turned Satan. In Book I, Milton justified the ways of God to men which is also his purpose of the epic poem. Satan is the first character brought into play in the verse where he takes the place of an anti-hero, more like the heroes of the Greek tragedies, whose hubris actually transcends with intensity of all the tragic-heroes of English literature by far. Nonetheless, more than the weight of the intense and passionate writing skills expressed through the lines of this epic poem, it involves a deep and latent psychology of man which finds a profound expression through the dilemma and mental conflict of Satan, the anti-hero of the epic poem titled ‘ Paradise Lost’.
Psychological Conflict of Satan
Navigating the first three books of Milton’s ‘ Paradise Lost’, one can easily trace the trajectory and transition of Lucifer into Satan, the fallen angel. A rebel by nature and one of the most fine-looking angels before falling, Satan makes his intention pretty clear at the outset of the epic by his epoch making verse, “ Better to reign in Hell than to serve in Heaven” (Milton, Fenton and Johnson 11). Nonetheless, in his transition course from being one of the most beloved of God and respected as God’s son, Lucifer has to experience inevitable psychological conflicts within him before instilling Satanity. In his course of change, he first breaks a rebellion against God where he refuses to be guided by the almighty and stay under his regime and thus bringing a new connotation forward that angels are self-raised.
Before delineating into the psychological conflict of Satan, it is quite essential to throw light on the character traits of the fallen angel. Undoubtedly, Satan is a great leader. Charismatic in nature, Satan is extremely manipulative and intelligent. He can persuade any body and is extremely arrogant in his conviction which potently displays his rebellious zeal as well. Satan is conceived by Milton as a character which is psychologically complex. He is strong in his outward appearance and it is only through his soliloques that his troubled and broken and anguished self surfaces out behind his tyranny and deceptions.
Milton, John, Fenton, Elijah and Johnson, Samuel. Paradise Lost. France: Harvard University, 1821. Print.