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Christopher Marlowe - Jan 17.docx

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York University
EN 2140
Aleksandar Lukac

th Thursday, January 17 2013 Drama Christopher Marlowe  Basic theme of morality plays – endless struggle between good and evil to possess man’s soul.  This is also part of the very common outdoor biblical preaching – explaining the choices that face humanity.  Allegory was also extremely popular – with characters like Slander, Danger and Fair Welcome included in plays. Morality plays were also fueled by Christianity’s increased interest in life and afterlife – encouraging people to “think upon their last ending.” Death becomes a character in the plays in front of which everyone stands equal.  Constantly faced with dilemmas and choices that can easily be classified as good or evil.  Constantly surrounded by death, always in fear. Ex. Hunger  Continuous culture of death. Imagery of death is present, skulls and skeletons, continuous obsession and presence.  Reminded how temporary our presence in the world is.  The looming idea of the afterlife.  Created art and tension for theatre art.  Audience could not relate to this too.  Becoming more and more secular.  Imagery of Death was present in all visual arts as well – skulls, skeletons, death heads.  The Pride of Life is a morality play that depicts King of Life’s overweening pride – and the punishment and repentance that he goes through.  Refocusing on humanity on each individual, all kind of accomplishments.  Morality plays developed into a more secular form, often depicting historical figures mixed with allegorical characters in the struggle between good and evil as well as in the struggle between Protestantism and Catholicism. Finally, they also included elements of philosophy and other educational elements under the influence of the interest in Greek and Roman art.  Political messages and social commentary.  Racine  Academy trying to reform the plays, the three unities. …?  Many of these plays were not published and offered to the public until after the death of the authors because of the morals that the current society believed in.  Actors were only ever given their parts. No one to copy or print these plays. These pages are found years after and must be pieced together. Verses might be added or taken away.  Politically and culturally, English was behind the rest of Renaissance Europe as the internal strife and wars hindered the development and unification of the th Thursday, January 17 2013 Drama country. Hundred year war (1337-1453) for the throne of France, war of roses between the houses of York and Lancaster weakened the country.  The conflict subdued
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