Thursday, March 19, 2009

Rosen on Religion and Violence in Milton's Samson Agonistes

Robert Rosen, University of Miami Law School, engages the work of Robert Cover in a new paper, Samson the Judge: Religion and Violence in Milton's SAMSON AGONISTES. Here's the abstract:
In this provocation, John Milton's SAMSON AGONISTES is read paying attention to the legal language and taking seriously that Samson is a judge. This reading connects Samson's story to the judge's duty to preserve confidences. It emphasizes that decisions and secrets are not things that judges give, but are avowals of themselves. In looking at a story from the Book of Judges, it adds to the Coverian literature by emphasizing that in the Hebrew prophetic literature, judges precede the state.