Analysis IN THE Picture Of Dorian Gray English Literature Essay

Personal thoughts and opinions of the picture of Dorian Grey and the way the author Oscar Wilde depicted himself in the book. This essay reads the novel from several aspects include "beauty and art" perspective of Wilde, the bond between the novel and the interpersonal background and the way the writer lives his own life in the novel.

Key words: aestheticism, Victoria age, corruption, responsibility

Oscar Wilde was created in 1854, when the Queen Victoria reigned and Victoria books style was flowering. Wilde's parents were successful Dublin intellectuals so when he was young he was tutored at home, where he became fluent in French and German. He was deeply considering the rising philosophy of aestheticism when he was at Oxford led by his tutors, Walter Pater and John Ruskin, who had a great impact on his writings later in his life.

The wealth in the Victoria era began to drop in the late 19th century. The hegemony of Great Britain was challenged by the rising Germany and home dispute with Ireland. Under the superficial vanity of the British society is the problem of the aristocracy. They led a dissolute life and their Vitoria values and beliefs started to vanish. Indulgence and hedonism got the place of a decent and reputable life style they used to live. Oscar Wilde was born to be a spokesman of the era in neuro-scientific literature. The picture of Dorian Grey is one and the only real book of his and, in my opinion, is a representative oeuvre of both his life and the declining era.

The story starts on a lovely day with Lord Henry Wotton watching the designer Basil Hallward painting the family portrait of a handsome young man named Dorian Gray. Dorian comes later and fits Wotton. After talked with the libertine lord, Dorian starts to think that beauty is the thing that deserves to go after in every his life. Distraught that his beauty will fade, he desires that the stunning and ever-lasting family portrait can get old instead of him, which finally comes true in some way. Later in his life, the portrait keep details of whatever he does and the family portrait ages and uglier once he does indeed something legal or corrupt. In the end, he thinks the only way to absolve him is to damage the painting with a blade, which ends his horrible life instead. What is ironic is the fact that his painting becomes what it used to be but Dorian himself dies with an aged and withered face.

Acknowledged as the spokesman of the viewpoint of aestheticism, Wilde's doctrine was "Art for art's sake". For Wilde, the goal of fine art would guide life if beauty by themselves were its subject. The picture of Dorian Grey reveals the fact that beauty on the top can only can be found in tragedies. As Henry said in the storyline -in the existence of off behind every beautiful thing there exists some tragic things are (The picture of Dorian Gray Oscar Wilde 1891), tragedy if the type of beauty. Wilde, a pursuer of extreme artwork and beauty, put together the type of both Dorian's and Basil's. He once said that: "Basil Hallward is exactly what I believe I am; Lord Henry is what the world considers me; Dorian grey is what I would like to be-in other age groups perhaps". These three main individuals in the story are the nature of the storyplot.

Dorian Grey is a handsome young man who allows Lord Henry's idea of hedonism. He indulges himself in all types of pleasure, moral and immoral. Like Oscar Wilde, Dorian considers that beauty is really the only thing of life and that is why he would prefer to operate his conscience for life-long youth and beauty. Dorian is really an extremist of aestheticism, somebody who Wilde admires. Wilde highlights Dorian's pleasure of living a two times life and being an exemplory case of duplicity. Although Dorian is extremely indulgent, he replies "be mindful, Basil. Going too much" when Basil accuses him of earning Lord Henry's sister's name a "by-word". This indicates that Dorian still cares what he appears like in people's eye and his image in the Victorian modern culture. 24 hours after committing a murder, he gladly attends a party and feels "keenly the horrendous pleasure of the dual life". Dorian relishes this double life as an integration of good and bad. I think this kind of life is what Wilde dreams of. Actually Wilde is merely like Dorian. His life is a paradox because he is both good and evil, both advanced and simple, both genuine and hypocritical. Not the same as other writers, he leads a much more true to life than others. Being accused of sodomite (homosexual person) by his lover's dad, he has lots of scandals and was imprisoned for two calendar year. He abandons his better half and children for his male enthusiast again after he is released. But he will not get what he pursues at last. Different from other freelance writers, he is one of the upper-class rather than the impoverished known for his biting wit, flamboyant dress and glittering discussions. Wilde was among the finest known personalities of his day (On Character types in "the Picture of Dorian Gray"--An Interpretation of Oscar Wilde' 2008). He changes to Roman Catholicism on his deathbed. All those experience will be the reflections of his motto "I want to live rather than survive". He himself is a living identity in his own life account. Wilde offers what he desires and what he respects to this person-Dorian Gray.

Another character in this history named Basil Hollward is also a representation of Wilde himself. Wilde says that Basil Hollward is what he thinks he's. I feel that is basically because Basil Hollward is an entire artist. Enticed by Dorian's gorgeous face, he paints the family portrait of Dorian which shows to be his finest work. Artwork is the only quest for basil and he does not want to assume that Dorian is evil although he was murdered by him finally. He still thinks that he is beautiful yet imperfect. What he commits is just a flaw in an apparently perfect thing. In my opinion, he is aware of what happened as the painting changes but he just does not want to believe. Once Basil acknowledges all the bad factors of Dorian, his dream of art was damaged. Dorian is a masterpiece of design to Basil as well as a fan deep in his heart. Who'd prefer to admit his or her lover is evil and corrupted? Wilde once said "my life as an artist depends upon him. " This is because basil, as an musician, offers all the doctrines of what Wilde think an designer should have. He is a perfect representation of Wilde's witticism: "everything that I desire to point out is the general principle that life imitates fine art a lot more than skill imitate life.

Disappointed to the population, Wilde gives all the social characteristics to this Lord. He hints Dorian to become half-human half-evil nature along with his corrupted lifestyle. What he does in the story is to lead Dorian to be demolished in his ideology. As he says that "the goal of life is self development and the entire realization of the type of the requirements". His position in the storyplot is best described by basil, as "never says anything good but never does indeed anything bad. "(Aestheticism in the picture of Dorian gray, 2006)

Besides the theme of aestheticism, this masterpiece also unveils the interpersonal situation and people's sense of irresponsible in those days. When Dorian trip to the opium dens of London, according to what Lord Henry asserts "crime belongs exclusively to the low purchasesI should fancy that offense was to them what artwork is to us". In Henry's sight, different social position has different world view and a tainted value must belong to the lower class. What ironic is that Dorian conflates unlawful and aesthete.

Back in the last level of the Victoria time, people were in love with indulgence and corruption but did not desire to be responsible for their patterns. This theme is also mirrored in the picture of Dorian Grey. For me, Dorian uses his family portrait to avoid his responsibility. He also justifies his actions in line with the viewpoint of the new hedonism. By the end of the book, he decides to demolish the painting in an effort to confess. Each one of these tendencies depicts a nature which aims to avoid all the commitments and condemnation.

Professor John Sutherland once said in his lecture that "this writing would have anchored Wilde only a place in literature, but his position is enhanced by his notoriety. " I am not totally up to speed with this statement. Wilde might not be a very successful novelist but he is a successful living individual pursuing what he really wants for many his life. He thinks that it was the artist's duty to rebel against precisely sacred orthodoxies. He and his novel are of total success in this sense as a perfect representation of art work and beauty.

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