Damned to Heaven: The Tragedy of Faust Revisited

Astrida Orle Tantillo


By reading Faust through the lens of Goethe’s own scientific principles, a new reading of the whole arises, a reading that revisits the historical debates about the conclusion of the play, whether about its morality, happy ending, or portrayal of technology. According to the naturalistic ethic that emerges within the text, the ending is tragic in that Faust ascends into a sphere characterized by stasis and non-productivity. The play thus is modern in its rejection of religious morality, while anti-modern in its critique of the scientist hero. (AOT)

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