Bjِrklunden Offers “Samson” Seminar

From Oct. 14 – 19, Lawrence University’s Björklunden is offering the seminar “Samson” with Bill Urbrock.

The larger-than-life figure of Samson dominates the narrative in Judges 13-16 of the Bible. This seminar will discuss this story with an eye to Samson’s amazing exploits, his flawed but engaging personality, and the fascinating women in his life: his mother, the Philistine woman of Timnah, the prostitute of Gaza, and the famous Delilah.

Participants will enjoy reading portions of John Milton’s Samson Agonistes, look at a Hollywood treatment of Samson, and read aloud Samson: A Play for Voices. This is a seminar for anyone who delights in a heroic story. The instructor will use the New Revised Standard Version (NRSV), but participants may use any Bible they prefer.

Urbrock (Ph.D., Harvard) is professor emeritus of Religious Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh, where he specialized in teaching Hebrew Bible studies and Ancient Near Eastern Religions. Samson: A Play for Voices, one of several dramatic pieces he has written, was first presented at St. Mary’s College in Notre Dame, Indiana.

During the week, seminar participants stay in a modern 37,000 square foot “lodge” that retains the estate’s Norwegian heritage. Commuters are also welcome. Seminar classes meet weekday mornings and some evenings with remaining free-time open to exploration of the area’s many cultural and recreational opportunities or simple relaxation at Björklunden’s meadows, woods, and mile-long, unspoiled Lake Michigan shoreline.

For complete course descriptions, fees, and registration information, call 920.839.2216 or visit