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5. Christianity and the Classics
About this Lecture
In this module, we consider the importance of the Classical past in the play, focusing in particular on the figure of Helen of Troy ('the face that launched a thousand ships') and the potential conflict between the Classical and Christian worlds.
In this course, Professor Lisa Hopkins (University of Sheffield Hallam) discusses Marlowe's Doctor Faustus. In the first module, we consider 'the form of Faustus' fortunes', focusing in particular on the importance on books in the play – not least the Bible itself. After that, we turn to the role of knowledge and learning in the play, before moving on to think about some of the theological issues in the play – focusing in particular on the question of whether Faustus can or will repent for his sins. In the fourth module, we think about the play's engagement with contemporary knowledge and the presentation of Faustus as a 'Renaissance man', before moving on in the fifth module to consider the presentation and importance of the Classical past in the play. Finally, in the sixth module, we think about the characters of Faustus and Mephistophilis together: what is the link between the two characters? are they in hell all along? and what is the meaning of Faustus' final 'Ah, Mephistophilis!'?
Lisa Hopkins is Professor of English at Sheffield Hallam University. Her principal research interests are in Renaissance drama, especially Marlowe, Shakespeare and Ford. She is also interested in the influence of Darwin on fiction, adaptation, and the work of Bram Stoker. At the moment, she is completing a book on From the Romans to the Normans on the English Renaissance Stage. She is a co-editor of Shakespeare, the journal of the British Shakespeare Association, and co-editor of the Arden Early Modern Drama Guides.
Cite this Lecture
Hopkins, L. (2018, August 15). Marlowe: Doctor Faustus - Christianity and the Classics [Video]. MASSOLIT. https://www.massolit.io/courses/marlowe-doctor-faustus/christianity-and-the-classics
Hopkins, Lisa. "Marlowe: Doctor Faustus – Christianity and the Classics." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 15 Aug 2018, https://www.massolit.io/courses/marlowe-doctor-faustus/christianity-and-the-classics