The Pleasures of pursuit are greater than the thrill of conquest. – In light of this view discuss ways in which writers present seduction and its consequences.
The sin ‘greed’ remains a seductive force in both texts leading to the downfall of Faustus and the three men and even the Pardoner to an extent. Faustus embodies the Renaissance man, who as R.M Dawkins puts “had to pay the medieval price for being one” he follows a humanist attitude and openly questions religious theology. For example, Faustus deems the idea that “the reward of sin is death” as unacceptable, because all men are sinful in his eyes. Faustus takes pleasure in questioning the unquestionable, as a renaissance man he wants to know more than in his reach, he is not content with the gift of immense knowledge he has been give from god, and it is because of this he sells his soul to the devil so he can “perform what desperate enterprises” he wishes.
In contrast, when Chaucer wrote his Pardoner’s tale, it was during medieval times where man was deemed to be secondary to god. The tale is written as a morality poem, through the narrative of a sermon. Sermon’s typically had a biblical theme “radix malorum est cubiditas” with a moral story to tell based on this. The story of the three men is typical of the period; the men are seduced by the sin of greed, and take pleasure in pursuing money. This said there was still a strong disgruntlement towards the church; a Marxist reading of the church sees it as a social - human structure which held enormous power over people both spirtually, and economically. The Pardoner’s tale is written as a didactic satire on the clerics who took pleasure in conning people with fake relics such as a “latoun a shoulder boon”.