The reader’s distaste for Satan is strengthened by Satan’s shift in motives. The conquering of humans, which he originally presented as a rebellion against God and his authoritative rule, later came to be about pure corruption and hate. It’s therefore possible to say that if Satan had never given up on his original reasoning, he would still be the hero of Paradise Lost. Works Cited # Milton, John. “Paradise Lost.” The Norton Anthology of English Literature.
These instances displays Milton's portrayal of Satan’s ineptitude to win against God’s supremacy. Although Satan is a dark figure that everyone wants to escape from, Milton maximizes the devil’s qualities to portray him as the oppressed fighter for freedom. Milton also humanizes Satan’s attributes by displaying his weaknesses and defeats in the face of the all knowing Creator. Then he is the absolute enemy that deceives and enchants man to succumb to their weaknesses. Milton deliberately creates a reason why Satan is necessary to God by examining the Scripture and was further elevated by C.S.
In his epic poem Paradise Lost, John Milton presents Satan as a complex and multifaceted figure. As Jeffrey Burton Russell describes in The Prince of Darkness, Milton’s goal in writing this epic poem was to “justify the ways of God to men” (Russell, chap.12, p.15). With this in mind, it is easy to interpret the character of Satan as a mere foe, the evil at the opposite of God’s goodness, and to see God as the obvious protagonist of the poem. Things in Milton, however, are not quite as black and white, and while the justification of God’s actions is at the centre here, it is the character of Satan who drives the poem forward, as a protagonist should. Satan is presented as a heroic figure from the very beginning of the poem.
Paradise Lost is a story of Genesis told as it normally would be, but with a protagonist focus on Satan. The story is told largely with Satan being favorably portrayed and God having little presence other than cursing things, which convinces the audience that Satan’s view of God as a tyrant may not be too far off. Still, Satan is portrayed as the villain of the story. However, he has characteristics of a classical hero; including flaws that make the audience relate to and feel sympathy for him. By using part of the black-and-white Genesis story which paints Satan as evil and juxtaposing a narrative which paints Satan as a sympathetic hero, Milton raises a question about morality that largely define the audience’s reaction to the story: what is immoral?
I personally believe that this book could be a story told to John Milton by the Holy Spirit. Milton's Satan is somewhat different to our thought of Satan largely because he is more complex than the Satan of the Christian tradition. Satan's rebelliousness, his seeking of transcendence and his capacity for action, particularly evil action, change certain people’s viewpoints on him, even if their viewpoint might be considered theologically misleading. The question is: do we actually understand Satan and evil by means of the book Paradise Lost? In John Milton's Paradise Lost, Satan is banished from Heaven for his defiance against God.
When a person hears Satan, a streak of fear, and the thought of evil arises. People fear Satan, and think of him as evil, but in John Milton’s Paradise Lost, he displays a thought of the Father being the evil being, and Satan a tragic hero. In Paradise Lost, Book 1 and 2, the minor areas where God is shown, He is displayed as hypocritical. He contradicts himself by creating the humans to be of free will, but when Satan displays free will, he is shunned. Satan could be described in many terms, and by many people, but all can be disputed.
When Paradise Lost begins, the vainglorious actions of Satan have resulted in his removal from heaven and placed him on the path to exact revenge against those who have done so. Though, the reader is hardly able to experience any distaste when reading about this man who opposes the consented force of good. He is are charming, dark, fanatical and desperate in his attempts. It is from these characteristics, that the reader may be swayed into viewing him as the protagonist (or even the hero) of the tale. Even C.S.
Satan, as portrayed by Milton in Paradise Lost, is a complex literary character. He has all the heroic qualities such as determination, fortitude, and dignity, yet despite these noble characteristics, Satan allows malice and pride dominate his personality. Paradise Lost exemplifies the notion that although a character may fit the archetype of an epic hero, pernicious and selfish determination can counter these attributes. Satan is initially introduced as God 's fallen creation: “Fallen cherub, to be weak is miserable, / Doing or suffering” is ultimately motivated by malice and vengeance (lines 157-158). The allure of free will is where the captivation of Satan 's character stems.
The important thing is to realize that Satan is sin, and being humans, who are all born into sin, we can easily relate to a sinful character. G-d is holy and perfect. This is something which we, being fallible humans, cannot begin to comprehend. Satan does, at the beginning, follow many of the attributes which coincide with Aristotle's definition of a tragic hero; however, after the first few Books, Satan looses his status as a tragic hero rather rapidly. Along with this, Satan's thoughts parallel the idea of "Evil, be thou my good," (p76, line 110) which is the opposite of what G-d intends.
Humanizing Satan: An Examination of Satan as a Victim In John Milton’s, The Paradise Lost, Milton’s representation of Satan makes us uncomfortable due to the recognition of his humanizing and relatable reaction to what happened to him. The reader expects Satan to be an evil, and malevolent figure who does evil acts because he loves it and there is no defense for it. While these aspects are prevalent in his character in the poem, Satan does not come across as a completely wicked person but instead, a victim. The representation of Satan has a personifying quality that any of us may have and do not want to admit. In book one, Milton’s portrayal of Satan makes us uneasy because we relate to his actions, which are ordinary human responses to similar situations.