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SparkNotes: Doctor Faustus: Plot Overview

18 Jan 2017 21:24 | Author: User1488160713 | Category: Data analysis phd thesis

The subtitle of the first epistle is “Of the Nature and State of Man, with Respect to the Universe,” and this section deals with man’s place in the cosmos. Pope argues that to justify God’s ways to man must necessarily be to justify His ways in relation to all other things. God rules over the whole universe and has no special favorites, not man nor any other creature. By nature, the universe is an order of “strong connexions, nice dependencies, / Gradations just” (30-1). This order is, more specifically, a hierarchy of the “Vast chain of being” in which all of God’s creations have a place (237). Man’s place in the chain is below the angels but above birds and beasts. Any deviation from this order would result in cosmic destruction. Because the universe is so highly ordered, chance, as man understands it, does not exist. Chance is rather “direction, which thou canst not see” (290). Those things that man sees as disparate or unrelated are all “but parts of one stupendous whole, / Whose body nature is, and God the soul” (267-8). Thus every element of the universe has complete perfection according to God’s purpose. Pope concludes the first epistle with the statement “Whatever is, is right,” meaning that all is for the best and that everything happens according to God’s plan, even though man may not be able to comprehend it (294).

Introduction (1-16): The introduction begins with an address to Henry St. John, Lord Bolingbroke, a friend of the poet from whose fragmentary philosophical writings Pope likely drew inspiration for An Essay on Man. Pope urges his friend to “leave all meaner things” and rather embark with Pope on his quest to “vindicate the ways of God to man (1, 16).

Comments
  1. author
    heavymeercat865 18 Jan 2017 05:06

    Pope's Poems and Prose study guide contains a biography of Alexander Pope, literature essays, quiz questions, major themes, characters, and a full summary.

  2. author
    fra. MEGABYXOS 18 Jan 2017 08:32

    In the Victorian era, Matthew Arnold dismissed Pope and Dryden as "classics of our prose". The 19th century considered his diction artificial, his versification too regular, and his satires insufficiently humane. The third charge has been disputed by various 20th century critics including William Empson, and the first does not apply at all to his best work. That Pope was constrained by the demands of "acceptable" diction and prosody is undeniable, but the elegance and flexibility with which Pope used this technique shows that great poetry could be written with these constraints. His expression is concise and forceful, conveying emotion as well as reason and wit. In An Essay on the Genius and Writings of Pope (1756 and 1782), Joseph Warton denied Pope was a "true poet", merely a "man of wit" and a "man of sense". The Romantics had little time for Pope, with the notable exception of Lord Byron, who acclaimed him as “the great moral poet of all times, of all climes, of all feelings, and all stages of existence”. Keats dismissed the style of writers who wrote in heroic couplets, saying: They rode upon a rocking horse And called it Pegasus.

  3. author
    crazyfrog751 18 Jan 2017 01:03

    Ca dit vouloir du serieux et ca essay de te ken

  4. author
    heavysnake802 18 Jan 2017 09:04

    Well people will groan and sigh but my favorite has always been Emily Dickinson. She is so succinct - and in context what a revolutionary! Also her life circumstance - staying in her room as a willing (?) prisoner, but seemingly imposed by others, a thin line there - I identify with that. I think she conquered her outward lack of autonomy with her mind - an amazing feat. I read Bukowski a fair amount in college and for a woman it is a bit hard to get past the misogyny, it was for me anyway. But my husband and in my past, myself were/are heavy drinkers and so I identify with that. - "Endurance is more important than truth".. There is a 7 or 8 part series of him on Youtube. Wonderful stuff. Two such different poets - but each has power.