Dr. Faustus as a Tragic Hero Essay

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Q.1. Discuss Dr Faustus as a tragedy. Tragedy – Definition Aristotle defines a tragedy as a ‘representation of an action which is important, complete and limited in length. It is enacted not recited and by arousing pity and fear, it gives an outlet to emotions of this type.’ However, for the Elizabethans, more specifically for Marlowe and Shakespeare, tragedy is not a restrictive view of human excellence or weakness as the Greeks are often inclined to present, but an affirmative view of human aspirations whose pursuit brings glory to the definition of a man. Struggle, conflict, suffering and failure may be the inescapable attendants but the human spirit is not stifled in its pursuits by what attends to them. The ability to withstand them is the tragic glory of man. Marlowe’s tragedy, therefore, is in fact the tragedy of one man – the rise, fall and death of the tragic hero. His heroes are titanic characters afire with some indomitable passion or inordinate ambition discarding all moral codes and ethical principles and plunging headlong to achieve their end. Such intense passion and pitiless struggle with super-human energy to achieve earthly gain and glory make Marlowe’s heroes great indeed and adds to the shining glory and grandeur of their personalities. Doctor Faustus as a tragic hero Doctor Faustus is the most famous play of Christopher Marlowe and this play alone has perhaps ensured that his name remains immortal in the history of English literature and English drama. This play shows that he was a skilled playwright and he could write exceptional drama. It is a tragedy of Doctor Faustus that is the main point of this play. At this point, we need to first define a tragic hero. A tragic hero is obviously the hero of a tragedy drama. However, this alone is not enough. Perhaps the first tragic hero in history of drama is Oedipus in ‘Oedipus Rex’ of
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