Themes and Important Topics in Doctor Faustus a play by Christopher Marlow
Theme of Fate in Doctor Faustus:
Fate plays an important role in human life; no man can deny the impact of fate on one's overall role in the career of life. But in Dr. Faustus, we experience fate favouring Doctor Faustus time and again while the foolish doctor enforcing the mortal will upon the agents of fate and heaves. He seems to be embracing the inevitable and forbidden. Throughout the play it never seems, ever for an instant, that Faustus is doomed to be sinned and dispatched to hell for ever. The role of fate, generally considered negative in classical tragedies, appears to have been quite positive in the current scenario which is quite surprizing.
Theme of Sin and Christian concept of redemption in Doctor Faustus:
"To err is human and to forgive divine" is an old maxim clearly describing the relationship between man and God, the Creator and the All-knowing. Doctor Faustus is as sinful as any man but the symbols and guidance provided to Dr. Faustus asking him to repent is seldom available to anyone else as evidently and openly as to Dr. Faustus. However, as per Christian concept of redemption , God is kind and forgiving; man must submit himself to God after realizing his sins and this repentance would lead him to a resurrection and redemption. But our dear Dr. Faustus is stupid enough to waste all the chances of redemption he ever gets.
Therefore, the concept of sin and resultant miseries of hell are undermined by him:
"If we say that we have no sin,
We deceive ourselves, and there's no truth in us."
Theme of Free will in Doctor Faustus
Fate and freewill have often been discussed and perceived as a life imposed upon man by Nature, an outer force and agent to Sublime. Dr. Fautus, the protagonist, is of the opinion "Che sera, sera". He has a firm belief in predestination and a fate which is final and inevitable. It is interesting to notice that throughout the play, Faustus is never forced for anything neither by the devils nor by the agencies of good; he always has a choice but, unfortunately, he opts for the worst.
Theme of Repentance in Doctor Faustus
Repentance is of pivotal importance in Christian religion. Christ was crucified for saving the mankind of its burden of sins. He is also known as a Messiah. The Satanic deeds committed by Faustus are still forgivable subject to repentance. And Faustus thinks of repenting and breaking the allegiance to devil under the influence of the angels but later fails to act upon it. He remains loyal to the satanic powers and adamantine hell. In the end of the play he seeks intervention by Christ for his redemption but then it was rather too late. The devil has just come to take away his soul which it does. The repentance of Faustus does not bring him any relief and it ends the play on a tragic note. The pride of the knowledgeable Dr. Faustus earns him nothing but suffering and woe in "everlasting world" of hell.