Oscar Wilde Fairy Tales Analysis

2006 Words9 Pages
Breaking Away from Convention: “Death” in Oscar Wilde’s Fairy Tales Oscar Wilde is a representative writer of aestheticism in the 19th century, who has a high reputation in literary history. Although academic research on Wilde has been increasingly prevalent in recent years, his fairy tale works, The Happy Prince and Other Tales and A House of Pomegranates, have been largely ignored by scholars. With the development of research on Oscar Wilde 's fairy tales, some researchers (e.g., Hilary Fraser, Philip K. Cohen) have studied the unique style of Wilde’s fairy tales. Unlike the traditional fairy tales, such as the Grimm’s tales and Hans Christian Andersen 's tales, which usually pursue a happy ending, Wilde 's fairy tales are filled with death and have an extraordinary attention on death. Specifically, Jerome Griswold has underlined that the unique emphasis of “death”, resulting from his challenges to the traditional artistic views, distinguished Wilde 's fairy tales from the traditional ones. The purpose of this thesis is to make a systematic and thorough exploration of the motif of “death” in Oscar Wilde 's fairy tales: to elaborate how “death” is used by Wilde in his tales as a weapon against the Victorian morality that was instilled in most traditional fairy tales, to illustrate how such utilitarian moral lesson corrodes artistic beauty and how Wilde breaks the conventions of the classical fairy tale tradition. To present a systematic exploration, this paper will be

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