Dr. Faustus And Twelfth Night : Experiential Learning

1517 WordsMay 4, 20157 Pages
Dr. Faustus and Twelfth Night: Experiential Learning Henry Perkinson, a former educational history and educational theorist professor at NYU, wrote it in his book Learning from our mistakes “learning takes place not only in success, but in failure as well” (23). Perkinson’s perspective of education, that education comes from personal experience and academic knowledge, can be used to view Thomas Marlowe’s Dr. Faustus and William Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night differently. Both stories have characters that have experienced traditional education, but in both plays the characters obtain true knowledge through revelations, which they receive after their first hand experiences. For Faustus, it is his attempt to gain fame through “necromancy” (Greenblatt 1129.25) that provides a revelation about good and evil during his final moments. For the characters of Twelfth Night, Viola’s disguise and secrets are the triggers for their individual revelations about human interaction and love. In both plays it appears that when characters try to defy pre existing social norms they experience greater knowledge through their experience rather than their academic knowledge. While both of the plays focus on experiential learning, both Dr. Faustus and Twelfth Night do highlight on moments of traditional academic learning. For example in Dr. Faustus his interest in necromancy only happens after he was “swollen with [knowledge], of a self-conceit” (Greenblatt 1129.20). Faustus has achieved a great

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