Discuss elements of conflict in Marlowe's Doctor Faustus.

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Dr. Faustus is riven with internal conflict throughout the play. He craves worldly fame and success and is prepared to sign up to a devilish bargain in order to obtain them. Yet he never feels completely comfortable with the deal he's made. He's always worried that, however powerful he becomes on earth, however wealthy, famous, or renowned, his mortal soul is in danger of eternal damnation. But still Faustus presses on with his headlong quest for godlike power until it's too late to turn back.

In relation to magic, Faustus is all powerful, but when it comes to his impending doom, he is utterly powerless. Thanks to his diabolical deal with the forces of darkness, Faustus is materially strong but spiritually weak. His plaintive cry of impotent despair encapsulates this:

When I behold the heaven, then I repent, And curse thee, wicked Mephistophilis, Because thou hast deprived me of those joys.

Torn between two competing impulses, Faustus is caught in a trap from which he cannot escape....

(The entire section contains 2 answers and 560 words.)

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