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Doctor Faustus / Edition 3

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Overview

Doctor Faustus is a play about desire: for the best in life, for knowledge, power, material comfort, and influence. Faustus sells his soul to the devil hoping to learn the secrets of the universe, but is fobbed off with explanations which he knows to be inadequate. He is obsessed with fame, but his achievement as a devil-assisted celebrity magician is less substantial than it was previously as a scholar.

Marlowe's most famous play is a tragedy, but also extremely funny. It involves hideous representations of the Seven Deadly Sins, and of Helen of Troy, the world's most beautiful woman. With its fireworks and special effects, it was one of the most spectacular and popular on the Elizabethan stage. Yet, ever since Marlowe's death, it has been regularly rewritten. Its mix of fantastical story, slapstick, and raw human emotion still arouses conflicting interpretations, and presents us with endlessly fascinating problems.

This student edition is based on the earlier so-called A-text of the play, with the B-text scenes included in an appendix. It contains a lengthy Introduction with interpretation of the play in its historical and cultural context, stage history, discussion of the complex textual problems, and background on the author, date and sources.

A guide to reading "Doctor Faustus" with a critical and appreciative mind. Includes background on the author's life and times, sample tests, term paper suggestions, and a reading list.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
This combines annotated and modernized versions of Marlowe's 1604 text, plus the 1592 English translation of an earlier German text on which Marlowe based his play. Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
From the Publisher

"There is a wonderful sense that evil lurks in every corner." - Guardian

"A thing of beauty to watch." - Independent

"Faithful and clever." - Herald Scotland

"Catches well the hellish claustrophobia of our restless urges." - Telegraph

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780713673760
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Academic
  • Publication date: 1/1/2009
  • Series: New Mermaids Series
  • Edition number: 3
  • Pages: 160
  • Sales rank: 715,913
  • Product dimensions: 5.10 (w) x 7.80 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Christopher Marlowe (1564-1593) was one of the foremost English dramatists of the Elizabethan era and a contemporary of William Shakespeare.
 
Ros King is Professor of English at the University of Southampton, and Director of the Centre of Medieval and Renaissance Culture. She is author of several books including The Winter's Tale, for Palgrave's Shakespeare Handbook Series and editor of Comedy of Errors for Cambridge's New Shakespeare Series.

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Table of Contents

Introduction

About the Play

Summary of the Plot

The Play

Faustus and Salvation

The Vision of Helen

Early Performances

Recent Stage History

Date and Sources

The Author

Dr Faustus 1

Dramatis Personae 2

The Text 4

Appendix 83

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 11 )
Rating Distribution

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(5)

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Sort by: Showing all of 11 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 24, 2003

    ABSOLUTELY FABULOUS!

    I was left with this book for an literature project, and I groaned about without even giving the book a chance. Then finally I was running out of time to read it and write an essay, but as I started it, I couldn't put it down. I am not a major in old english, but it didn't take me long to understand it. I absolutely loved this book/play, it was amazing and it wasn't hard at all to write an essay on it! I give it many, many, many stars.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 6, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Doctor Faustus by Christopher Marlowe

    This is a very intiresting and amazing play.

    Second only to Shakespeare in my opinion, Christopher Marlowe shares Shakespeares poetic writing style.

    I've always believed what makes a book is what it is trying to prove.

    Dr. Faustus asks amazing and philisophical questions.

    What is more important, the quest for knowledge, or the faith in belief?
    Would you give up your soul and body for an enlightened mind?

    These questions were beginning to be asked in Marlowe's time period, in the Renaissance, when society began to become secular.

    Faustus is one of the most interesting and confusing character, second to perhaps only Hamlet. He desires to do all these amazing things, and then he just plays pranks on a bunch of fools. He refuses to repent being to proud, yet it also seems he won't repent because he's ashamed, because it is too late. These many contradictions in character make this book amazing.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 12, 2006

    Thrilling

    This play is wonderful -- thrilling like a roller coaster, it is lyrically written, humorous and tragic at the same given moment. Marlowe's genius for combining entertainment for the groundlings and brilliance for posterity is showcased here!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 8, 2002

    Excellent

    This is an excellent read; however, it is also a very difficult one. Once I started reading this book, which I must admit I wasn't expecting much from, I had to read it through to the end. With an very interesting plot, stunningly imaginative imagery dealing with hell and damnation, and intelligent questions regarding Calvinism and Catholicism, this wonderful book hits you with so many different and interesting levels of meaning. Unless you are very familiar with Middle English, though, I'd recommend you stay away from it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 8, 2002

    READ THIS BOOK!!!

    It was good!

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 31, 2009

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    Posted October 27, 2008

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    Posted August 14, 2009

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    Posted October 7, 2009

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 14, 2014

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 23, 2011

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