Samson Agonistes: A Jungian Perspective
To date, scholarly analysis of John Milton's 'Samson Agonistes' has failed to fully explain why many readers find the play less than satisfactory as a tragedy. This paper uses insights from Jungian psychology to demonstrate that Milton's Samson never forces the reader to question commonplace distinctions between good and evil; thus Samson never rises to the level of a true tragic figure. The paper will include a brief slide presentation to illustrate Jungian theory regarding a key image in the drama.
Keywords: John Milton, Tragedy, British Renaissance drama
Dr. John Pollock
Professor of English, Department of English and Comparative Literature, San Jose State University