Note: The following is a participatory insight and critical question regarding Friday, October. 12, 2012’s Lecture Discussion of Christopher Marlowe’s Dr. Faustus:
Necromany in Dr. Faustus… is it the only variant of magic explored within the text?
In response to todayâ€™s lecture discussion of the concept of necromancy as the conduct of â€œblack magicâ€ or otherwise, â€œdark magicâ€, ascribed with a sinister connotation within the text of Dr. Faustus, I was prompted with the following critical consideration: If Christopher Marlowe depicts necromancy and its occult implications as a â€œdark magicâ€ mired in deviance and malevolence, is he suggesting that other pursuits of knowledge(namely, alternative, academically oriented disciplines) are thus forms of â€œbenevolent magicâ€, and are therefore commendable by the divine authority of God? Is Marlowe, in effect, serving to convey the conviction that one may access divine authority and identify with God through engaging with a variety of academic disciplines, principles, and practices? Thus, it is more pertinent to consider a more general question: Is knowledge only power, as the old conventional dichotomy states, or is it magic as well? Therefore, if Dr. Faustus assumes necromancy over intellectual activities, is he, in essence, exchanging the practice of one method of magic for another?