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Word Count: 1,325
On the face of it Dr Faustus is not an anti-Catholic play Yet once you have read into it certain aspects of the play - there are many anti-Catholic notions and views that Marlowe has placed within the text If the reader has no prior knowledge of how the world was in the Sixteenth century then they would probably not uncover Marlowes hidden messages There are many issues dealt with in the play yet they all follow a route to anti-Catholicism All of the ideas dealt with are reminiscent of the period that Marlowe is writing in when people did have quite humanist views and were hostile towards the Catholic Church because of the lies that they had been tellingThe main theme of anti-Catholicism is Dr Faustus rejection of God For a sixteenth century audience to watch someone reject God and sell their soul to the devil is the most anti-religious thing that they could do They most probably would have been petrified of what the consequences of his actions would be Yet at the same time would most probably have admired his courage to stand against an establishment that had ruled their entire lives by preaching falsehoods and in effect stealing from them through the sales of indulgences Also right from the beginning when we are introduced to Faustus we find him in Wittenberg - the same place in which the monk Martin Luther lived - an anti-catholic statement in itself as Luther himself opposed the Catholic regime I believe Marlowe has intentionally set the play in Wittenberg to make a statement right from the beginning that this play is set out to make anti-Catholic notionsThe play deals with sin and damnation at the heart of Christianitys understanding of the world The play shows us that Faustus pride which causes him to strive for knowledge may have seemed admirable at the turning point in the Renaissance period but that this pride and insolence to
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