Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: Patterns of conflict in the English morality plays
Author: Belsey, Catherine
Awarding Body: University of Warwick
Current Institution: University of Warwick
Date of Award: 1973
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Access from Institution:
The dissertation considers the English morality plays as explorations of inner conflict. The pre-Reformation moralities use personification-allegory as a means of analysing the conflict which takes place within the soul of man between his attachment to this world and his other-worldly aspirations. The social ethic of Reformation theology, however, introduces a new interest in social relationships. The moralities of the post-Reformation period retain allegory to analyse the inner process which lead to ethical choice,but they also incorporate literal dramatis personae in order to express social themes, and the proportion of personification-allegory correspondingly decreases. The early popular Elizabethan "tragedies” are predominantly literal, but they tend to retain personified abstractions as a means of expressing inner conflict. It is suggested that in the transition from this hybrid form to purely literal tragedy, the allegorical technique of the earlier plays is absorbed rather than discarded, that the deliberative soliloquies of later tragic heroes are a development of the analysis of inner conflict leading to ethical choice which is central in the morality tradition.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: PR English literature