In his recent study, Shakespeare and the Allegory of Evil (1958), Professor Bernard Spivack points out two related trends in the development of the English morality play during the sixteenth century: the first a change from a hero who represents all humanity to one who embodies only an aspect of humanity; the second a change from a comic to a tragic ending. Behind these changes lay the general shift from a Catholic to a Protestant theological perspective. One of the chief purposes of the older plays was to demonstrate the possibility of salvation for all humanity: hence...
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