The Open University since 2006
Alternatively you can skip the navigation by pressing 'Enter'.
Thinking Allowed 2016: Good neighbours, The connection between sport and domestic abuseMonday, 4th July 2016 00:15 - BBC Radio 4This episode of Thinking Allowed explores how we value our neigbours and the links between spor and domestic violence. Read more: Thinking Allowed 2016: Good neighbours, The connection between sport and domestic abuse
The Secret Life of Children's Books: Five Children and ItMonday, 4th July 2016 20:30 - BBC Four
Genius of the Modern World: FreudTuesday, 5th July 2016 23:00 - BBC Four
City in The Sky: ArrivalWednesday, 6th July 2016 02:30 - BBC Two
Genius of the Modern World: FreudAvailable until Friday, 5th August 2016 00:00In the final episode, Bettany Hughes explores the world of Sigmund Freud. Read more: Genius of the Modern World: Freud
The Big C & Me: Episode 3Available until Saturday, 30th July 2016 03:10
Old School With The Hairy Bikers: EPISODE 1Available until Saturday, 30th July 2016 02:10
Thinking Allowed 2016: Good neighbours, The connection between sport and domestic abuseAvailable for over a year
Is Brexit going to unseat English as the lingua franca?With the monoglot Brits no longer trotting in to Brussels, will English start to loosen its grip... Read more: Is Brexit going to unseat English as the lingua franca?
Genius of the Modern WorldIn this three-part OU/BBC co-production for BBC Four, Bettany Hughes explores the life and works... Watch now: Genius of the Modern World
Can renewable energy power the world?Renewable energy sources are gaining an increasing share of world energy supplies. In the next... Try: Can renewable energy power the world? now
Start writing fictionHave you always wanted to write, but never quite had the courage to start? This free course,... Try: Start writing fiction now
What does Christopher Marlowe's Doctor Faustus tell us about the author and the time at which the play was written? This free course, Christopher Marlowe, Doctor Faustus, will help you to discover the intricacies of the play and recognise how a knowledge of the historical and political background of the time can lead to a very different understanding of the author's intended meaning.
After studying this course, you should be able to:
- read closely – analyse a passage from the play
- examine genre – what kind of play is Doctor Faustus?
- consider themes – what are the main themes or issues explored in the play?
- read historically – what are some of the connections between Doctor Faustus and the historical period in which it was written?
- read biographically – what, if any, insights does Doctor Faustus give us into the character and reputation of its author?
- Current section: Introduction
- Learning outcomes
- 1 Christopher Marlowe
- 2 Reading Doctor Faustus
- 3 Hero and author
- Keep on learning
Study this free course
Enrol to access the full course, get recognition for the skills you learn, track your progress and on completion gain a statement of participation to demonstrate your learning to others. Make your learning visible!
Christopher Marlowe, Doctor Faustus
This course is on Christopher Marlowe's famous play Doctor Faustus. It considers the play in relation to Marlowe's own reputation as a rule-breaker and outsider and asks whether the play criticises or seeks to arouse audience sympathy for its protagonist, who sells his soul to the devil in exchange for 24 years of power and pleasure. Is this pioneering drama a medieval morality play or a tragedy?
This OpenLearn course is an adapted extract from the Open University course.
Copyright & revisions
Originally published: Monday, 18th January 2016
Last updated on: Monday, 18th January 2016
- Creative-Commons: The Open University is proud to release this free course under a Creative Commons licence. However, any third-party materials featured within it are used with permission and are not ours to give away. These materials are not subject to the Creative Commons licence. See terms and conditions. Full details can be found in the Acknowledgements and our FAQs section.
- This site has Copy Reuse Tracking enabled - see our FAQs for more information.
If you enjoyed this, why not follow a feed to find out when we have new things like it? Choose an RSS feed from the list below. (Don't know what to do with RSS feeds?)
Remember, you can also make your own, personal feed by combining tags from around OpenLearn.
All our alternative formats are free for you to download, for more information about the different formats we offer please see our FAQs. The most frequently used are Word (for accessibility), PDF (for print) and ePub and Kindle to download to eReaders*.
- Word (3.4 MB)
- PDF (3.5 MB)
- ePub 3.0 (3.1 MB)
- ePub 2.0 (3.1 MB)
- Kindle (734 KB)
- RSS (170 KB)
- HTML (2.5 MB)
- SCORM (2.5 MB)
- OUXML Package (29 KB)
- OUXML File (78 KB)
- IMS Common cartridge
- Moodle backup (3.2 MB)
*Please note you will need an ePub and Mobi reader for these formats.