Relatively all authors are very fond of creating an underlying message to criticize society. Authors do this through social commentary. The book “The Picture of Dorian Gray” is no exception. The author, Oscar Wilde, criticizes the upper class through the consistent underlying idea that people are often deceived by one's beauty and are unable to understand the poison that fills the world is corrupting it.
History, as it progresses, evolves and adapts to new knowledge. This novel takes place about a century after America became a country. The knowledge of North America led the European countries to invade and repopulate with their offspring, while driving the natives out. That led to the creation of new countries. Until then, many believed that there was only Europe and Asia on a map alongside some islands. The truth one knows is not always certain. Many characters are religious in The Picture of Dorian Gray. Religions around the world rely on what is scripted to be true. Even though many overlap or cancel each other out, billions around the world continue to believe in what is certain for them. Romance is also another thing believed to be certain. The relationships focused on in the novel are very unstable and based on almost no connection other than money. Although there are many different views about different romances. One type of romance that has long been under fire are LGBTQ romances. While many live happily being who they are, others face the scrutiny of others throwing what they believe to be true onto them. That is the case with Oscar Wilde himself. He lived in a time where his truth was not accepted by
The Picture of Dorian Gray, one of Oscar Wilde’s masterpieces, portrays one of the most important values and principles for him: aestheticism. As a criticism to the life lived during the Victorian era in England, Wilde exposed a world of beauty a freedom in contradiction to the lack of tolerance a limitation of that era; of course inspired due to Wilde’s personal life. All the restrictions of the Victorian England lead him to a sort of anarchism against what he found to be incoherent rules, and he expressed all this to his art. His literature is a strong, political and social criticism. He gave a different point of view to controversial topics such as life, morality, values, art, sexuality, marriage, and many others, and epigrams, for what he is very well known, where the main source to the exposure of his interpretations of this topic.
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.
The Picture of Dorian gray is a book written by Oscar Wilde and it was published in 1880. The book was later revised by addition of more chapters and reprinted in April 1891. Dorian Gray is the main character in this book that is described as a beautiful and unspoiled male who changes his life completely by sinning and pleasure after meeting Lord Henry. Basil Hallward who is a painter develops obsession for Dorian because of his beauty whereas Lord Henry Wotton Basil’s friend influences Dorian with his theories about life, pleasure and women even though he had no intention of changing Dorian’s personality. Lord Henry’s influence in Dorian leads to his downfall. The author’s main themes are identity, influence, and experience.
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.
The portrait, the main symbol of the novel, carries all the marks of Gray 's degeneration, who is exploring all possible vices and desires, without to notice his moral decay. And all these marks show on the canvas, become a sort of conscience for Dorian.
As a writer one is greatly influenced by their personal experiences with social, historical, and cultural context within their specific time period. Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray was shaped by the aspects of the world around him. The themes of the text are are influenced by morality in the Victorian Era. Throughout the Victorian Era a deeper movement was also prominent in London called Aestheticism. Aestheticism is the worship of beauty and self-fulfillment. Wilde is greatly influenced by the societal movements in the Victorian Era, therefore the theme of hedonism is prominent displaying the influence of Aestheticism in The Picture of Dorian Gray and further explaining the consequences of selfishness and self-pleasure.
The reader gets the impression that the portrait is a representation of Dorian 's inner self, and how it becomes uglier and more disgraceful as time gradually passes and with every horrific crime that he commits, as can be seen in the following quote: “The picture had to be concealed. There was no help for it.” (Wilde 113). The portrait serves as an image of Dorian 's true nature and the relationship between how his soul progressively becomes more nefarious, and how the evil of his soul becomes visible on the painted surface of the canvas. The way Wilde uses the portrait as a motif throughout the story helps the reader to see and understand how Dorian himself is not yet entirely unfettered by the influence of the portrait. As the portrait significantly becomes more hideous, Dorian gradually loses his mind. The reader understands that what eventually leads Dorian to kill Basil Hallward, the only true friend he has, is the constant reminder of the evil found at the heart of Dorian’s nature, as represented by the portrait. In Dorian doing so, the reader realises that not only does Dorian kill Basil, he also kills his only chance of redemption of his soul. The reader realises that the statement that Dorian had expressed earlier in the story was the truth: “Yes, Basil could have saved him. But it was too late now.” (Wilde 109-110).
Dorian Gray, the protagonist in the novel, lives a superficially stable double life. The portrait that Basil Hallward, Dorian’s artist and friend, created for Dorian caused a self-image imbalance. The portrait was young and juvenile, while Dorian was soon to grow old and immoral. Thus causing a mental epiphany that made Dorian realize he could not have his fellow peers discover he is not innocent. “” At least you are like it in appearance. But it will never alter,” sighed Hallward. “that is something.”” (Wilde 33) The reader begins to perceive that Dorian is both intrigued and disgusted by the never changing portrait of his innocence. At this point, Dorian begins to acquire the indication to switch souls with the painting, in order to
The Picture of Dorian Gray which told about Dorian Gray, a young man on his twenties who insists to be forever young was written in 1890 by Oscar Wilde, an Irish writer born on October 16,
Lord Henry Wotton is another influencer on Dorian Gray. He has a lot of different ideas on life and how to live it. He is a friend of Basil and is visiting with him when Dorian comes to sit for the painting. Henry stays and talks to
The German Faust myth has been rewritten and adopted in many formats over the years. It’s theme has been reproduced in many forms from books to television, operas and plays, and even a graphic novel. Oscar Wilde applies the tale in his own way in The Picture of Dorian Gray and puts in parallels to older Faust plays by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe and Christopher Marlowe in his book. Marlowe’s Doctor Faustus, Goethe’s Faust, and Wilde’s Dorian share many similarities and some great differences.
From the beginning of the novel we get to see a model of poor and unconventional morality, Lord Henry Wotton, a man who is moved by an ethic current called “New Hedonism” which taking into account society’s ethics (specially the ones from the Victorian Era) is quite immoral. The New Hedonism basically consists in looking for the individual’s best comfort, pleasure and happiness (based on beauty), leaving aside the other’s comfort and what should be morally done. This character with poor morality is who guides the book’s main character Dorian Gray along his adventure. However, it is vital to take into account the fact that Dorian Gray is never forced to follow New Hedonism and that Wilde never influences or invites the reader to follow New Hedonist
Dorian Gray starts off as a harsh person who thinks about repairing his mistakes, but transitions to a selfish murderer who seeks pleasure, all because of Lord Henrys poisonous words. Dorian Gray ruined countless lives throughout the book and goes from breaking hearts and causing suicides, to killing his good friend Basil Hallward. As a result of Lord Henry’s influence, he begins to think only about himself and for his own benefit and pleasure and nothing of anyone else. This leads him to a selfish, evil