Introduction The Picture of Dorian Gray is one of the most discussed works in English literature, provoking, just shortly after its publishing, a whole storm of indignation. Only six years earlier, J.K. Huysmans Á Rebours had been published in France and marked the apogee of its author. Both works are considered to be the cornerstones of symbolist, decadent and aesthetic writing. However, too often these works were (due to their scandalizing content) overlooked in their hermeneutics and mistaken for purely perverse, flamboyant or simply degenerated works. For the majority of the late-Victorian reader saw the decadent or aesthete as someone who was physically ill and feeble; morally, an arrant scoundrel; intellectually, an unspeakable
Nature and beauty were emphasized in many literary works from the Romantic period. This is largely due to the withdraw many people and artists felt from nature after the industrial revolution in Europe during the late-1700s and the mid-1800s. This is manifested in The Picture of Dorian Gray as more of a grotesque and dark obsession with beauty.
Cruelty plays a vital role in developing the plot and characters in “The Picture of Dorian Gray”. Throughout the piece, many acts of cruelty are displayed from Dorian Gray and others that show truly who they are how they've developed from it. Dorian takes on a huge change in his morals and standards because of the influence taken in from others. This influence causes him to only care about his own youth and vanity, resulting in a huge change of personality. The more Dorian becomes influenced by Lord Henry and the painting, the crueler he becomes
Picture of Dorian Gray Archetypes Most novels follow the general archetypes when it comes to its characters, and The Picture of Dorian Gray is no exception. Oscar Wilde uses various archetypical characters to send a message, especially about the power of influence. In The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde, Basil Hallward embodies the archetype of the mentor to show the power of good influence, while Lord Henry embodies the archetype of the devil figure to show the power of bad influence and temptation.
The Picture of Dorian Gray written by Oscar Wilde. The Picture of Dorian Gray shocked the moral judgments of British book critics. Some of them said Oscar Wilde deserved to be pursuance for breaking the laws guarding the common morality because the uses of homosexuality were in that time banned. This book was for that time unusual because it had a pretty serious criticism on the society from that time. The novel is about a young and extraordinarily beautiful youngster, named Dorian Gray that have promised to his soul in order to live a life of eternal youth, he must try to adapt himself to the bodily decay and dissipation that are shown in his portrait. The genre of the novel is a terror, drama, psychology, humanitarianisms, romance and paranormal components.
“Do not be misled: ‘Bad company corrupts good character.’” (1 Corinthians 15:33). The protagonist in "The Picture of Dorian Gray" by Oscar Wilde suffers from bad company. The sway of people and objects causes impressionable Dorian to descend into corruption. Little by little, he makes choices influenced by the thoughts put in his head. At the end of the book, he has lost all of his innocence and gained cruelty. Bad company and objects are what causes Dorian Gray 's corruption.
The Paper of Dorian Gray Throughout Oscar Wilde’s novel, The Picture of Dorian Gray, we view the horrible actions of the main character, Dorian Gray. These actions, however, never seem to affect Dorian. We soon come to realize that this self-portrait reflects Dorian’s actions and aging process instead of Dorian and allow him to live a secret life of horrible acts. In the novel, Dorian takes full advantage of the portraits power, calling the portrait a reflection of his soul, and makes no effort to preserve his soul due to the poisonous influence from Lord Henry and his own selfishness.
The theme of appearance extends further in Dorian’s life. Dorian’s outer beauty allows him to get away with almost anything, due to the fact that people equals his outer beauty to him being a good person. In reality, Wilde makes it very clear that Dorian Gray is not a good person.
Morality and The Picture of Dorian Gray “The pendulum of the mind oscillates between sense and nonsense, not between right and wrong.” C.G. Jung The Picture of Dorian Gray, by Oscar Wilde, was first published in 1890, right in the middle of the Victorian Era, an era that was characterized by its conservatism. Ever since, and due to the content of the book, it has been condemned as immoral. Furthermore, on 1891, Wilde published a preface protecting his book from public punishment in which he said “There is no such thing as a moral or an immoral book. Books are well written, or badly written.
Eternal desire of youth : heaven or hell ? Although « The Picture of Dorian Gray » was published more than one hundred years ago, Dorian Gray is more real than he has ever been nowadays. It is a novel written by Oscar Wilde, one of the greatest authors in the English literature. It reflects themes that have been human preoccupations: the expresses of desire for eternal beauty and youth, which is a representation of our today’s society and its fixation on appearance.
Another theme illustrated through Wilde’s use of motifs and symbols is the theme of superficiality. The theme of superficiality can be understood as a sense of the superficial view of outer beauty that is shown in the work. It relates to the concept of remaining young, which is an important factor of what is shown in the novel. This is an important part of the novel because outer beauty plays a bigger role for Dorian, than inner beauty does. In the beginning of the novel, Lord Henry and Dorian have a conversation that focuses on the topic of youth and Dorian 's outer beauty – Lord Henry mentions the fact that Dorian has a beautiful face, and later during this conversation, Lord Henry states that: “youth is the only thing worth having…” (Wilde 23). This conversation leads Dorian to wish that he will only age in the painting, and not in reality. Wilde creates a theme of superficiality as he shows through motifs and symbols how Dorian’s sinful and horrific inner beauty becomes excused as the characters of the novel primarily superficially values Dorian’s outer beauty.
Dorian is afflicted with this as he keeps to himself in his estate. Furthermore, without the influence of parents, as stated in the novel that he lived most of his childhood without them, he is offered no other perspective to guide him away from the negative influence from Lord Henry. But as he changes, taking in the influence Lord Henry has upon him, he acts upon his new perspectives without the help of Basil or other peers to turn him back around. This is Dorian’s fault, as he has the outlets in which to redeem himself, just as Frankenstein did, but chose to ignore them, and continued to let their attitudes and passions to get the better of their judgement through
Lord Henry even gave particular offense for female of the species, he said to Dorian Gray that ‘women are a decorative sex, no woman is a genius and women represent the triumph of matter over mind’. But, Dorian ignores Lord Henry’s advice and even invited him and Basil Hallward to watch Sibyl Vane’s act. This part was my favorite because Dorian Gray did not care what other people thought and truly believed himself that Sibyl Vane was a women that suites him and he was confident in his decision. The way of Oscar Wilde wrote this book was interesting because of good plot and twisted ending that made me hard to predict which is great. I loved it when this story touched about beauty and consequences if we did wrong, that was when Dorian Gray tried to kill the portrait, reflected as his soul made him killed himself.
The withering of the painting represents the destruction of Dorian’s soul as he grows more corrupt. The physical representation of his actions through the painting frustrates Dorian, but he sinks deeper into his life of sin. Someone might think that seeing a physical representation of his sin would make Dorian think twice about his actions, but it does not. Dorian continues to commit horrible crimes and his portrait becomes more ugly. Dorian Gray “remains young and beautiful, while the portrait grows steadily older and more hideously ugly, manifesting in its deformity the moral corruption of Dorian's ‘soul’” Dorian Gray in The Picture of Dorian Gray, is a young man who sits for portraits painted by Basil Hallward.
Lord Henry’s painting showed Dorian the reality of life and all the sins he had committed. With the picture, Dorian destroyed it plus his own life because he could not bear the fact that his beauty was going to fade. In addition, Henry influences Dorian by manipulating him because; he carries on with his idea of remaining youthful. This is evident when he says, "To get back to my youth, I would do anything in the world, except take exercise, get up early, or be respectable" (Liebman 300). Lord Henry had everything to do with Dorian’s obsession of wanting to remain young especially with the picture and his philosophy.