[Milton-L] Sophocles and Samson

Kemmer Anderson kanderso at mccallie.org
Thu Nov 15 10:28:49 EST 2007

>While sitting in Brian Hampton's class the at UT-Chattanooga, 
>listening to him read the opening speech of Samson, I heard the 
>voice from Ajax, a speech performed by 2 classes of students a few 
>hours before. Those "rousing motions" (SA, 1182) (Richard DuRocher's 
>2005 paper) went off in my head. The "I am lament" (Ajax,468) speech 
>from Ajax, the despair of Samson echoed through my head.

I just spent a whole period hammering out Samson's speech to my class 
who are performing and reading Ajax after reviewing his actions in 
the Iliad, comparing the Hebrew God with the Greek gods. At the end I 
said write a journal entry comparing the despair of Samson and Ajax. 
What I see now is the following: An essay comparing the despair of 
Samson, Ajax, and Philoctetes. Should I pursue the essay with my 
students? I hear the echo from the prison, the cave, or the tent. 
What do you all think?

Jefferson at 16 and 17 filled his commonplace book with quotes from 
Samson Agonistes. Somehow this is the way of educating young Americans.

Thanks for stirring my wonder during the Miltonic musings at Murfreesboro.


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