In his closely argued essay Christopher Fanta maintains that the ambiguity in Marlowe’s plays may well result from the duality of Marlowe’s thought. Fiery protagonists like Tamburlaine, who are bent on overpowering the limitations of society and nature, are set against what Fanta terms the “agonists”: a handful of minor, virtuous characters who by their actions and interaction with the hero express Marlowe’s “other,” muted voice. Fanta analyzes five “agonists”: Zenocrate and Olympia in Tamburlaine, Abigail in The Jew of Malta, Prince Edward in Edward II, and the Old Man in Dr. Faustus.
LeBaron Russell Briggs Prize Honors Essays in English 1970
An Approach to the Ambiguity of His Plays
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Publication Date: 01/01/1970