Thesis published exploring divorce in Milton, Blake and Yeats

This doctoral thesis by Andrey Felipe Martins considers the legacy of Miltonic ideas of divorce on Blake and Yeats.

The doctoral thesis by Andrey Felipe Martins at the Federal University of Santa Catarina has now been made available, under the title "The legacy of Miltonic divorce: uniting and putting asunder in Milton, Blake and Yeats":

During his term as a senator of the Irish Free State (1922-1927), W.B. Yeats became enmeshed in a controversy with the Catholic press concerning divorce. Claiming that divorce was a right gained by the efforts of men of the then-declining Anglo-Irish Ascendency, the poet laureate surprised the members of the Dáil by basing his 1925 defense on the prose works of John Milton. A notorious public man, the seventeenth-century poet had himself been known in his lifetime as the ?divorcer? because of four treatises written during the First English Civil War. In The Doctrine and Discipline of Divorce, The Judgment of Martin Bucer, Tetrachordon and Colasterion, he had defended the dissolution of marriage on the grounds of its failure to create a companionate ideal, whose main doctrinal guidelines were refined in the time span of three years (1643-45). The divorce campaign became, indeed, so pivotal for his career that Milton would compose one of the most successful and enduring renderings of the story of Adam and Eve in Paradise Lost (1667). Particularly attuned to how the institution of marriage has throughout history sutured with imaginary idealizations the fundamental imbalance of amorous liaisons that psychoanalysis expresses with the maxim ?there is no such thing as sexual relationship,? the contingent encounter between the two poets in the Irish Dáil is the point of departure of this thesis to undertake an examination of the ideologies informing the representation of marriage and divorce in the works of Milton, William Blake, and Yeats.

Andrey Felipe Martins recently received his PhD from the Andrey Felipe Martins

The thesis is available at the UFSC web site. (Open Access.)