Monday, November 4, 2013

Religious-less Violence

A lot of the scholarly discussion I came across about Samson Agonistes dealt with the way religious violence is either glorified or not glorified, depending on who you agree with.

And then I came across this gem of a YouTube video. It features everything from God-like spear and axe throws to Vulcan death-grips, and total destruction of what appear to be Persian ruins. It features almost everything, that is, except for religion.

No longer is Samson a member of God's chosen people who is called as a protector of a covenant people. He's not had a fatal haircut yet. (Though the one he has would likely be described by fashionistas as "near-fatal.") In fact, the only part of the narrative that has been preserved is the fact that he is ridiculously strong. These movies (yes, there are multiples) set out to accomplish one thing-- take the strongest characters from the Bible, mythology, etc. and throw them into the ring together. All the tragic and didactic aspects of Samson's story have been exterminated.

So what's worse-- religious violence or non-religious violence? At least religious violence has some sort of driving purpose, right? Obviously this film is a bit of a caricature, but I think that the mentality that created  it is going strong in our society today.

1 comment:

  1. Religious violence in my mind is just as bad as non-religious. Prescribing religious reasons for destroying a people or civilization just creates a way for people to rationalize brutal actions. So that might make religious violence worse. At least people who commit non-religious violence don't blame their actions on a non-accountable entity.