Sympathy for the Devil: An Exploration of the Devil’s Relationship with Humanity in Literature
Appendix B: Abstract
DOHERTY, LINDSAY Sympathy for the Devil: An Exploration of the Devil’s Relationship with Humanity in Literature. Department of English, June 2021
ADVISORS: Jennifer Michell & Hugh Jenkins
In this thesis, I will be exploring the mythology of the Devil and may works make him sympathetic to the readers, or sometimes even more human than man. Ultimately I will be exploring the ways in which the Devil interacts with humans and how that shades and affects him as much as it does us. There will also be a discussion on how much he can be blamed for his own actions, and how much of it is God’s fault.
To do this, I will be exploring the Devil and God in six different works, the Bible, Paradise Lost by John Milton, A Marriage Between Heaven and Hell by Willaim Blake, Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett, Lucifer by Neil Gaiman, and Lucifer the television show created by Tom Kapinos. Each of these works explores the idea of whether the Devil is truly humanity’s enemy or humanity’s friend. It explores just how much sympathy we can have for a being who is meant to be the embodiment of everything evil, and how much we can grow critical of a benevolent ruler.