Promiscuous Listening, Episode 11 Resources

In this episode of Promiscuous Listening, Marissa talks with Dr. Rachel Trubowitz (University of New Hampshire) about death and renewal in the final two books of John Milton’s Paradise Lost. Particular attention is given to Eve’s role in the epic’s concluding lessons about Jesus’s death and Christian salvation. For Milton, Jesus son of Mary second Eve” (10.183) descends spiritually on the maternal line rather than genealogically through the paternal bloodline. In this way, as Dr. Trubowitz puts it, “Bloodline and primogeniture (male birthright) play no role in defining Jesus’s sovereignty” in Paradise Lost — nor should they, according to Milton, in England’s governance.

References for this episode: 

More about our guest, Dr. Rachel Trubowitz, Professor of English and former President of the Milton Society of America (website)

In addition to her many publications on gender and race in Milton and his contemporaries, Dr. Trubowitz’s current work focuses on mathematics in early modern English literature and culture. Here’s a sampling of her recent scholarship:

  • “Reading Milton and Newton in the Radical Reformation: Poetry, Mathematics, and Religion.” ELH: English Literary History 84, no. 1 (2017): 33-62.
  • “The Consolation of Natural Philosophy: Margaret Cavendish and the English Revolution Book.” The Oxford Handbook of Literature & the English Revolution, edited by Laura Lunger Knoppers. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013. 656-668.
  • Nature and Nurture in Seventeenth-Century English Literature. Oxford, England: Oxford University Press, 2012.
  • “’The People of Asia and with Them the Jews’: Israel, Asia, and England in Milton’s Writing.” Milton and the Jews, edited by Douglas A. Brooks. Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press, 2008. 151-177.
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