Analysis Of John Milton 's ' Paradise Lost '

2201 Words Nov 15th, 2016 9 Pages
Eve’s story arc in Paradise Lost, by John Milton, is a bildungsroman, the German word for a “novel of education.” Eve develops through the five stages of a typical bildungsroman character, as demonstrated by several different works from the genre. It will be useful to discuss several different bildungsromans from different eras and regions to fully determine the necessary characteristics of a bildungsroman, like The Odyssey, To Kill a Mockingbird, David Copperfield, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, and The Catcher in the Rye. One of the most well-known bildungsromans and one of the most applicable to Eve’s development is To Kill a Mockingbird. Scout Finch goes through a process comparable to Eve’s, and will be especially useful in assessing Eve’s maturation since they are both heroines. It is worth noting that although Eve is not necessarily the protagonist and certainly not the sole focus of Paradise Lost, the work may still be a bildungsroman in the same way that The Odyssey is Telemachus’ bildungsroman despite the work not being centered around him.
A bildungsroman is very similar to the classic “coming-of-age” story, but the former tends to investigate the moral growth of the protagonist more than the latter. According to the Encyclopedia Brittanica, a bildungsroman “deals with the maturation process, with how and why the protagonist develops as he does, both morally and psychologically.” The critical aspects of a bildungsroman are, as evidenced by examples of the genre:…
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