My most recent book project, Love and its Critics (Cambridge: Open Book, 2017), written with Arpi Movsesian, is a history of love and the challenge love offers to the laws and customs of its times and places, as told through poetry from the Song of Songs to Ovid and Virgil, the Greek writers Longus and Musaeus, the Occitanian troubadours, the Italian poets of the thirteenth- and fourteenth-centuries, the poems and plays of Shakespeare, the poems of John Donne and Robert Herrick, and John Milton’s Paradise Lost. It is also an account of the critical reception afforded to such literature, and the ways in which criticism has attempted to stifle this challenge.
My previous book (Ashgate, 2012 / Routledge 2016) is The Atheist Milton. My argument is essentially this: based on his association with Arian ideas (denial of the doctrine of the Trinity), his argument for the de Deo theory of creation (the idea that the universe is created, not from nothing or ex nihilo, but from the essence of God, which puts him in line with the materialism of Spinoza and Hobbes), and his Mortalist argument that the human soul dies with the human body, Milton was an Atheist by the commonly-used definitions of the period.
My first book, The Tyranny of Heaven: Milton’s Rejection of God as King, focuses on John Milton and the English 17th century, a place and time in which questions of freedom and authority eventually brought a nation to revolution, civil war, and regicide.
Ph.D. 2001, Northwestern University
M.A. 1996, Truman State University
B.A. 1994, Truman State University