(urth) Dr. Island on WolfeWiki

Matthew Keeley matthew.keeley.1 at gmail.com
Sat Jul 28 16:19:23 PDT 2007

I really don't know too much about Dr. Island, having read it only once, but
I might be able to help out just a bit on "Il Penseroso." The main character
of "The Death of Dr. Island" has a split brain and two personalities, while
"Il Penseroso" is a companion piece to Milton's earlier "L'Allegro." "Il
Penseroso" discusses the enjoyment of melancholy, while the speaker of
"L'Allegro" is more conventionally "happy" (not really the right word I'm
afraid). Essentially, the two poems form a dialectic or polemic (I get the
impression that Milton himself preferred the worldview expressed in "Il
Penseroso"). I'll try and take another look at the poems in the next few
days; I'm writing this from memory, and it's been about a year and a half
since I've taken a close look at either poem. In any case, count me in.


On 7/28/07, Matthew Groves <matthewalangroves at gmail.com> wrote:
> We have been working on the entry for "The Death of Dr. Island" on
> WolfeWiki.  It's only begun, really, but it could use input from
> contributors with a background in mythology, or a knowledge of the
> poems, especially Enoch Arden and Il Penseroso.  Or someone with a
> background in abnormal psychology or brain science.  Or someone who
> can talk about the physics of the Dr. Island satellite habitat, and
> all that sciencey stuff.  Or just someone who likes this story.  It's
> one of those masterpieces of Wolfe's short fiction that seem to
> resonate thematically with all his other major works.
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