Monday 7 April 2014

F... is for Faust

About three years ago, I went to the Delhi World Book Fair with no TBR list. I walked around with no aim, picking up books that caught my fancy, ones that I'd heard were good, ones that looked like they'd be good etc. Good times... and I was earning at the time, so I splurged! One of the books that I bought and later read was Faust by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. I knew that it had something to do with Satan, and I really liked the name of the author.
I wasn't disappointed. Faust is the tale of a very learned young scholar, who sells his soul to the Devil and makes a pact with his advocate for years and years of power. In the degree that I'm currently studying towards, I'm required to read The Tragic History of the Life and Death of Doctor Faustus by Christopher Marlowe, same plot. Both texts I have thoroughly enjoyed. There is something truly wonderful and sinister about making a pact with the Devil himself, and I really think that each one of us should be put through that test. No, I'm not religious, but I do like the symbolism of it. And I thoroughly believe that all the so-called enlightened will fail the test.
Anyway, you must read one or both of these works about Faust, they are filled with intrigue and excitement. I have loved the characters and dark dark plot. As one would expect, the ending is tragic. Goethe's Faust is also filled with beautiful and lyrical poetry and is an excellent mix of prose and poetry, great for those who aren't comfortable with a body of work that is complete poetry, like Milton's Paradise Lost.
This is the sixth post for the April A-to-Z Blogging Challenge 2014.
Previously, Archaism, British literature, Critical Analysis, Drama, Edinburgh


Karen Jones Gowen said...

In all my years of literary study I've never read Faust. *embarrassed* Following you from the A to Z Challenge, look forward to visiting you again!

S. L. Hennessy said...

I've been a Faust fan since college. An excellent tale that one.

Tony Laplume said...

I wonder if I'll write a story like that at some point, include Daniel Webster, Robert Johnson. I've never read either Faust, however. My story would probably involve Marlowe himself. And Shakespeare.

Suzanne said...

To read Faust has been on my to read list for years - you've reminded me to get on and read it :)
Suzanne @ Suzannes Tribe

Anonymous said...

I've been reading so many books about the devil recently! Faust and The Divine Comedy are now on my to-read lists! i've actually been meaning to read Paradise Lost for ages :-/

Michelle Woods said...

I had to read it for my degree, too, but I enjoyed it so much that I'm now listening to it in audiobook form. It's beautiful to hear out loud!

New follower :)

Michelle @ In Media Res