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“가장 조용하다고 여겨질 때 가장 강력한”: 밀턴의 정치성과 Samson Agonistes의 신성한 충동
“Vigorous Most When Most Unactive Deemed”: Milton’s Politics and the Divine Impulse in Samson Agonistes

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Authors
이하람
Issue Date
2013
Publisher
서울대학교 인문대학 영어영문학과
Citation
영학논집, Vol.33, pp. 1-15
Keywords
MiltonSamson Agonistespoliticsrepublicanismmillenarianismdivine violence
Abstract
왕정복고 이후 밀턴(John Milton)의 말년의 작품—Paradise Lost, Paradise Regained, Samson Agonistes—에 나타나는 정치적 태도에 대해서 비평가들은 크게 두 상반된 입장을 취한다고 볼 수 있다.1) 한 부류의 비평가는 밀턴이 혁명의 실패 이후 현실 정치로부터 관심을 거뒀으며 이러한 무저항주의(quietism)가 이들 작품에 반영되어 있다고 본다. 반면에 주로 당대 역사에 깊은 관심을 갖는 비평가들은 밀턴의 좌절되지 않은 공화주의적 신념과 열정을 이들 작품에서 읽어낸다.2) 그런데 밀턴의 삼부작 중에 서 비평적 의견의 대립이 특히 문제적인 작품은 1671년에 한 권의 책으로 묶여 나온 『복
락원』과 『삼손』이다. 두 작품이 비평가들 사이에서 논쟁을 야기하는 까닭은 (적어도 표면적으로) 밀턴이 『복락원』에서 행동 대신 인내를 강조하는 한편 『삼손』에서는 폭력을 수반한 저항을 추인하기 때문이다. 그렇다면 신의 뜻을 기다리는 인내와 악에 대한 무자비한 징벌 중에서 밀턴은 과연 무엇을 선택하는가? 밀턴은 자기모순에 빠진 것인가?
아니면 두 입장은 밀턴의 세계관 속에서 양립 가능한가? 본 논문은 역사주의적 비평가들의 연구에 기대어 후기의 밀턴이 혁명적인 신념을 견지하였음을 보여주려 한다. 이를 위해 보다 넓은 맥락에서는 『복락원』과 『삼손』에 일관되게 드러나는 급진적 요소를 규명하고, 구체적으로 『삼손』에서 그려지는 신성한 충동의 혁명적 함의를 해명하겠다.
This paper examines the ways in which John Milton expresses his unflinching republican faith in his last work, Samson Agonistes. I argue that Milton adheres to his revolutionary ideals even after the Restoration, analyzing Samson Agonistes as one of the most evident examples of his resilience. By
highlighting radical implications of Milton’s late poetry, I intend to refute a critical view which interprets his trilogy (or any of them) as a sign of retreat
resulted from his disillusionment or despair, a view that is so influential that it even permeates the criticisms which argue for Milton’s republicanism. In
my view, even Paradise Regained, an apparently quietistic work, shares radical politics with Samson Agonistes because the inner virtue and political action promoted in each of these works are not incompatible but rather complementary in launching and strengthening a revolutionary movement.
However, rather than exploring Milton’s radical politics in a comprehensive manner, this paper focuses on that of Samson Agonistes through the analysis of its dramatic structure and historical allusions. First, Samson Agonistes testifies to Milton’s radicalism which, if necessary, deploys militant action, as the
whole poetic drama is oriented towards the vindication of Samson’s ‘divine’ violence. As Samson interacts with other characters in the first half of the play,
his iconoclastic struggles serve to justify his final act inspired and endorsed by the divine authority; Milton especially contrives to represent this ‘heroic’ deed
as divine one as unequivocally as possible. Milton’s political aspiration can be discerned not only from the literary evidence but also from historical one. In describing Samson, for example, Milton uses the millenarian metaphors, such
as Christ and the phoenix, which were largely shared by the seventeenth-century radicals. In other words, Milton’s adoption of millenarianism in Samson Agonistes exemplifies his persistent hope for the revolutionary social change. Thus, Samson Agonistes reveals the extent that Milton longs to realize his ideals
which he knew were unachievable by then but righteous nonetheless.
Language
Korean
URI
http://hdl.handle.net/10371/81464
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College of Humanities (인문대학)English Language and Literature (영어영문학과)영학논집(English Studies)영학논집(English Studies) No.33 (2013)
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