By Tobias Nicklas, Erik M. M. Eynikel
Samson is a weird personality. he's the main robust of the Israelite judges and 3 complete chapters within the ebook of Judges are allotted to him. but he demonstrates many weaknesses, no longer least for the charms of girls. within the foreign convention “Samson: Hero or Fool?” organised on the collage of Nijmegen in April, 2008, the texts of Judges 16-18 have been studied from diversified views, investigating how the advanced personality of this (anti)hero lived on in numerous methods within the later traditions approximately him. The contributions speak about additionally the reception historical past of the Samson traditions in later Jewish, Christian and Islamic literature, in addition to his illustration in figurative and appearing arts.
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Extra info for Samson: Hero or Fool?: The Many Faces of Samson (Themes in Biblical Narrative, Volume 17)
C. ), Tragedy and Comedy in the Bible (Semeia 32), 131–147, Decatur 1984. , Feeling and Form, New York 1953. , 1997, ‘The Wild Man in the Bible and the Ancient Near East’, Journal of Biblical Literature 116: 217–233. , 1990, ‘Samson as Culture Hero, Trickster, and Bandit: The Empowerment of the Weak’, Catholic Biblical Quarterly 52: 608–624. ——, Judges: A Commentary, Louisville 2008. , The Trickster: A Study in American Indian Mythology, New York 1956. , The Symbolism of Evil, trans. E. Buchanan; Boston 1967.
From the Israelites’ point of view Samson appears as a judge and saviour but also as an agitator and thus as a danger for his own people. His ambitions as a freedom fighter are opposed to Israel content with living under a Philistine reign. Consequently the people blame Samson for their woeful situation and do not understand his ambitions (Burte 1917, 60–61). 44 susanne gillmayr-bucher They treat him like an untamable animal (Salten 1928, 31; Burte 1917, 84ff) and are eager to deliver Samson into the hands of the Philistines.
22 j. cheryl exum ridicule the Philistines and have a good laugh at their expense. When he gets the better of them, the story shows a hearty, lusty approval of his unconventional conduct. Central to a reading of the Samson story as embodying a comic or classic vision is the acceptance of the narratorial point of view according to which God is controlling events according to a plan: ‘His father and his mother did not know that it was from Yhwh, for he was seeking an occasion against the Philistines’ (14:4).