Dr Roy Booth on Doctor Faustus
- Do not let your lack of sympathy for Faustus blunt critical engagement with the text.
- The narrative of Doctor Faustus allows Marlowe to express blasphemous concepts.
- The character of Faustus is based on the real-life man, Dr. Johann Georg Faust.
- Contemporary performances of Faustus tend to lack the risk involved in Marlowe’s own time. Students need to be aware of how exciting and challenging the play can be.
- Watch Silviu Purcărete’s take on Doctor Faustus to get a sense of the type of danger that can be involved within an interpretation of the play.
- ‘Faust. My heart’s so hard’ned I cannot repent.
Scarce can I name salvation, faith, or heaven,
But fearful echoes thunder in mine ears
“Faustus, thou art damn’d!”’
Doctor Faustus, Scene VI, II.20 – 23
- ‘Now go not backward: no, Faustus, be resolute.
Why waverest thou? O, something soundeth in mine ears
“Abjure this magic, turn to God again!”’
Doctor Faustus, Scene V, ll.8 – 10
- Scene V, Lines 1 – 15
- Scene VI, Lines 20 - 40
- Bartels, Emily C. 'Authorizing Subversion: Strategies of Power in Marlowe's Doctor Faustus', Renaissance Papers, (1989): 65-74.
- Brooke, Nicholas. “The Moral Tragedy of Doctor Faustus”. Cambridge Journal 5 (1952): 662-87.
The most thoroughly Satanic reading of the play is in this lamentably hard-to-find essay by Nicholas Brooke, where the play is read as Faustus’ inverted morality play, a quest to reach hell and resist all the temptations set out by heaven.
- Greenblatt, Stephen. ‘Marlowe and the Will to Absolute Play.’ In Renaissance Self-Fashioning: From More to Shakespeare. By Stephen Greenblatt, 193–221. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1980.
- Halpern, Richard. ‘Marlowe's Theater of Night: Doctor Faustus and Capital’, ELH 71 (2004): 455-495.
- Hamlin, William H. ‘“Swolne with Cunning of a Selfe Conceit”: Marlowe's Faustus and Self-Conception’, English Language Notes, 34 (1996): 7-12.
- Hamlin, William M. ‘Casting Doubt in Marlowe's "Doctor Faustus", Studies in English Literature, 1500-1900 41 (2001): 257-275.
- Hattaway, Michael. ‘The Theology of Marlowe's Doctor Faustus’, Renaissance Drama, N.S. 3 (1970): 51-78.
- Minshull, Catherine. ‘The Dissident Subtext of Marlowe's Doctor Faustus’, English: The Journal of the English Association, 39 (1990): 193-207.
- In Our Time BBC Radio 4 programme: The Myth of Faust
- The OUP Writers Inspire project provides some materials on Christopher Marlowe
- Dr Faustus as imagined by the Romanian director, Silviu Purcărete - see the trailer and the review
- Dr Faustus at the RSC, Summer 2016, includes background materials
- The British Library's Discovering literature page on Dr Faustus