Most of Christopher Marlowe’s dramas portray protagonists who passionately seek the power to rule, to acquire wealth, and to advance knowledge; they go all-out past the orthodox confines well-known to contain human will, thus opening up the imaginative persona of the viewer (NAEL 8, 2.219) .Though considered to be the greatest English writer and literary artists by the Literary Reference center, “ Marlowe significantly influenced the literary works of Shakespeare and this has been utterly acknowledged worldwide.” According to The International Marlowe-Shakespeare Society’s website, William Shakespeare’s work resembled Marlowe’s , making him to be “… the first poet before Shakespeare who possessed anything like real dramatic intellect, or who appeared to have any distinct notion of what a drama should be. The coupling of these Elizabethan contemporaries is particularly fitting, in that questions of power and magic lie at the center of the writers’ ingenious universe, yet the two dramatists find a way to approach the themes from immensely different perspectives. William Shakespeare’s The Tempest and Christopher Marlowe’s Doctor Faustus predominantly hold matters pertaining to pursuit and use of power and magic, which bring out distinctive attitudes from viewers.
The most significant theme in these dramas is the possession of control and command over others, ordinarily known as power. Doctor Faustus, Lucifer, Methastophilis, Prospero, Ariel, Caliban, Antonio and the courtiers from Milan, all demonstrate different levels of control. The character of Doctor Faustus is that of an intellectual person in the fields of logic, medicine, law, and in “… heavenly matters of theology.” (NAEL 1024; 12-19), but forsakes it all to make a pact with the devil, exchanging his soul for mortal power. Faustus envisions of the many incredible things he will achieve with powers
Cited: Marlowe, Christopher. "Doctor Faustus." The Norton Anthology of English Literature: The Major Authors. Ed. Stephen Greenblatt. 8th ed. Vol. 2.New York: Norton, 2006. 218-238. Greenblatt, Stephen. "Doctor Faustus." The Norton Anthology of English Literature. 8th ed. Vol. 2. New York: W.W.Norton &, 2006. 1002-1004. Print. Greenblatt, Stephen. "Doctor Faustus." The Norton Anthology of English Literature. 8th ed. Vol. 2. New York: W.W.Norton &, 2006. 1022-1057. Print. Greenblatt, Stephen. "William Shakespeare." The Norton Anthology of English Literature. 8th ed. Vol. 2. New York: W.W.Norton &, 2006. 1058-1061. Print. Harlan, Dr. William. "Tempest Plot Summary." Lecture. LECTURE ON THE TEMPEST. Tempest Plot Summary. 6 May 2012. Web. 06 May 2012. . The International Marlowe-Shakespeare Society. "The International Marlowe-Shakespeare Society." The International Marlowe-Shakespeare Society. The International Marlowe-Shakespeare Society, 5 May 2012. Web. 05 May 2012. . Mazzeno, Laurence W. "William Shakespeare." Literary Reference Center. Ebscohost, Jan. 2009. Web. 5 May 2012. . Shakespeare, William. "The Tempest." Https://sanjacinto.blackboard.com/bbcswebdav/courses/ENGL-2322-701-201220-23617/The%20Tempest.txt. Web. 5 May 2012. .