Marlowe's Doctor Faustus

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Marlowe's Doctor Faustus Marlowe's representation of Doctor Faustus changes direction through the play. We follow the change in ambition and greed of a human being who seeks pleasure so much that he sells his soul to the devil for a number of years. Does the power that Faustus obtains corrupt him or is he merely dissatisfied with the power he has and is greedy for more. At the start of the play, Marlowe uses powerful language when referring to Faustus' search for knowledge. "O, What a world of profit and delight, of power, of honour, of omnipotence, is promis'd to the studious artisan". This is what Faustus wishes to obtain, the forbidden knowledge that he feels he can achieve, however it seems strange that Faustus should want to learn more and to be taught and able to understand this forbidden knowledge as he previously bids a farewell to thinking "Divinity, adieu!". Faustus is striving for a great power and his intentions are on a grand scale. "I'll have them read me strange philosophy and tell the secrets of all foreign kings; I'll have them wall all Germany with brass and make swift Rhine circle fair Wittenberg". This is what Faustus thinks he will have the ability to do, but later in his same speech we see signs of his arrogance and the way in which he is governed by greed "I'll levy soldiers with the coin they bring and chase the Prince of Parma from out land and reign sole king of all our provinces". With such ambition and hunger for success, Faustus carries out the sealing of his contract with Lucifer. Faustus is elevated with anticipation of the power he will have "O, this cheers my soul! Come, show me some demonstrations magical, that I may conjure in some lusty grove and have these joys in... ... middle of paper ... ...y greedy. He wanted everything and more. What he really wanted, he would never be able to obtain and he has lost sight of all else. He is unable to distinguish between what is important and what is petty. Faustus has also become unaware of the need to repent. During the first part of the play, he is tempted to repent and break from his contract but then he becomes deluded and tempted by the great power he possibly could have. If he had repented, perhaps he would be closer to the knowledge he seeks than he is in his alliance with Lucifer. Thus, it seems that Faustus' greed is what corrupts him and not merely the power. He has the power to do great things but he has no interest in his aspirations anymore. He is just greedy to obtain the forbidden knowledge which he will, ironically, never be able to learn due to turning away from the one who holds it all.
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