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We Do What We Want

Hilde Widerberg

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We Do What We Want Painting  - We Do What We Want Fine Art Print
 

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Title

We Do What We Want

Artist

Hilde Widerberg

Medium

Painting - Aquarelle

Description

The Chorus discusses Samson's background and describes his various militaristic accomplishments:
Ran on embattled armies clad in iron, And, weaponless himself, Made arms ridiculous, useless the forgery Of brazen shield and spear, the hammered cuirass, Chalybean-tempered steel, and frock of mail Adamantean proof; ... Then with what trivial weapon came to hand, The jaw of a dead ass, his sword of bone, A thousand foreskins fell (lines 129-134, 142-4)
Although he is great, the Chorus points out that, through his blindness (actual and metaphorically), he is a prisoner:[5]
Thou art become (O worst imprisonment!) The Dungeon of thy self; thy soul (Which men enjoying sight oft without cause complain) Imprisoned now indeed, In real darkness of the body dwells, Shut up from outward light To incorporate with gloomy night For inward light alas Puts forth no visual beam (lines 155�163)
Samson reveals how he lost his power because of his desire for Dalila, and, through this act, betrayed God:[6]
I yielded, and unlocked her all my heart, Who with a grain of manhood well resolved Might easily have shook off all her snares: But foul effeminancy held me yoked Her bond-slave. O indignity, O blot To honor and religion! Servile mind Rewarded well with servile punishment! (lines 407�413)
However, his state is more than just his own, and it represents a metaphor for the suffering of God's chosen people when Samson says:[7]
Or to th' unjust tribunals, under change of times, And condemnation of the ingrateful multitude. If these they scape, perhaps in poverty With sickness and disease thou bow'st them down, (lines 695�698)
After Samson rejects Dalila�s pleas, she asks for Samson to "let me approach at least, and touch thy hand" (line 951), and Samson responds, "Not for thy life, lest fierce remembrance wake / My sudden rage to tear thee joint by joint" (lines 952-3). He shows Dalila how not to upset him: �At distance I forgive thee, go with that" (line 954). The Chorus, shortly after, complains about the nature of women and how deceptive they are:[8]
Whate'er it be, to wisest men and best Seeming at first all heavenly under virgin veil, Soft, modest, meek, demure, Once joined, the contrary she proves, a thorn Intestine, far within defensive arms A cleaving mischief, in his way to virtue Adverse and turbulent, or by her charms Draws him awry enslaved With dotage, and his sense depraved To folly and shameful deeds which ruin ends. (lines 1034�1043)
Harapha points out that Samson is
... no worthy match For valor to assail, nor by the sword Of noble warrior ... But by the barber�s razor best subdued (lines 1164-7)
But he does describe Samson's past accomplishments when he says "thou art famed / To have wrought such wonders with an ass�s jaw" (lines 1094-5).

The Chorus discusses how God grants individuals with the power to free his people from their bonds, especially through violent means:
He all their ammunition And feats of war defeats With plain heroic magnitude of mind And celestial vigor armed; Their armories and magazines contemns, Renders them useless, while With winged expedition Swift as the lightning glance he executes His errand on the wicked, who surprised Lose their defense, distracted and amazed. (lines 1277-86)

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January 12th, 2013

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