With his series of brief, unforgettable tragedies, Wilde urges us to think more carefully about the emotional and spiritual lives of our friends.
The character of Dorian Gray and the story of his profound degeneration provide a case study examining the viability of purely aesthetic lives. Dorian pursues Sibyl from first sights, intent on acquiring her before he ever attempts to truly know her.
Rather, the proponents of this philosophy extended it to life itself. There is an argument, then, made by Wilde for a new aestheticism, approached with more constraint than Dorian employs.
Dorian rejects Sibyl as soon as her theatrical talents falter. It is also said that Lord Henry is a duplicate of Oscar Wilde which Wilde could of used to illustrate how he may have done something he regrets in life and used the book as a message to show how he feels Oscar wilde self love dorian gray essay.
In his pursuit of his own pleasures, a distinctly narcissistic attitude emerges, and the incompatibility of morality and unconditional aestheticism becomes all the more apparent. This is also ironic as later on in the novel we learn that although Dorian still remains beautiful and youthful the picture changes, which could suggest his soul darkening as the picture becomes more grotesque.
Dorian Gray is often read as an explicit proclamation of the worthiness of living life in accordance with aesthetic values. In the novel, Lord Henry Wotton trumpets the aesthetic philosophy with an elegance and bravado that persuade Dorian to trust in the principles he espouses; the reader is often similarly captivated.
Yet to Dorian, she is merely a source of entertainment, an ornament that quickly loses its shine. It can be poisoned or made perfect. Influences on others, if existent, are trivial at best.
Speaking of aestheticism, Wilde is quoted: According to mythology, Narcissus, upon catching a glimpse of his reflection in a pool, becomes so enraptured by it that he stood and admired it endlessly, unmoving for the rest of his life.
Only a more deliberate practice of aestheticism may harness this egotism and avoid the immorality Dorian embodies. Throughout the novel Oscar Wilde uses several characters to influence Dorian Gray and transform him from a boy of purity to a man full of monstrous actions.
Many have read The Picture of Dorian Gray as a novelized sponsor for just this sort of aesthetic lifestyle. Art should be beautiful and pleasure its observer, but to imply further-reaching influence would be a mistake.
This argument is based not only in the moral obligation of the individual, but with the betterment of all of society in mind. Wilde himself admits, in a letter to the St. It can be bought, and sold, and bartered away. Indeed, Dorian appears to realize the consequences of his unbridled aestheticism; however, he is much too far gone to salvage.
Again and again, human beings become trophies for Dorian, sparkling statuettes that he can cast aside when his mind wanders.
He tacitly agrees with Henry that love, like art, is merely a form of imitation. The mere existence of these aliens, however, provides hope that the utter hedonists of society may learn to harness their damaging tendencies, and in doing so, better the intellectual and moral state of humankind.
Oscar Wilde, however, proposed that the principles of the Aesthetic Movement extend beyond the production of mere commodities.
Aestheticism does well to condemn the renunciation of desires, but it is an excessive obedience to these desires that is subversively dangerous. Arnold focuses on its detrimental effects on society and the possibility for societal improvement when aesthetic tendencies are properly controlled.
And the moral is this: This pursuit of perfection, however, is likely an arduous and uncomfortable task, and is therefore incompatible with pure aestheticism.
Dorian Gray personifies the aesthetic lifestyle in action, pursuing personal gratification with abandon. Eventually, as in the myth of Narcissus, such egotism has its consequences. After careful scrutiny, he concludes: Dorian reveals his epiphany to Lord Henry: Some concessions must be made for the absolute aesthete, then, for such transcendence occur.
That is to say, real art takes no part in molding the social or moral identities of society, nor should it. Furthermore, if someone is spiritually corrupted it means they have been unmasked to unethical things in society and are prone to do such things themselves.
The ruination of Dorian Gray, the embodiment of unbridled aestheticism, illustrates the immorality of such a lifestyle and gravely demonstrates its consequences. For Dorian, whose uncontrolled aestheticism rejects the concept of morality, the immorality of his actions goes unrecognized.
Even Basil, whose love for Dorian inspired great works of art, ceases to have worth for Dorian when he becomes uninteresting. Yet, while he enjoys these indulgences, his behavior ultimately kills him and others, and he dies unhappier than ever.
This self-absorption, then, appears to be an inevitable consequence of aestheticism. In the end, as a testament to the purely aesthetic life, the only legacy Dorian leaves behind—everything that identifies him as who he was—is his superficial jewelry.Oscar Wilde is best known for the novel The Picture of Dorian Gray and the play The Importance of Being Earnest, as well as for his infamous arrest and imprisonment for being gay.
Oscar Fingal O'Flahertie Wills Wilde was born on October 16, in Dublin, Ireland. Despite her brief appearance in Dorian Gray, Sibyl is among the most fully realized of Wilde’s characters.
Wilde takes a rare detour from his long descriptions of Dorian’s thoughts and Henry’s inexhaustible witticisms to relate the story of young Sibyl and place her. The Conflict Between Aestheticism and Morality in Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray Oscar Wilde prefaces his novel, The Picture of Dorian Gray, with.
A Comparison of Oscar Wilde and Dorian Gray One novel that stands out as literary masterpiece is The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde. Wilde wrote a dark tale of a man, Dorian Gray, who destroys his life by exchanging his soul for eternal youth and beauty.
In Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray, Lord Henry influences Dorian Gray to the point where Dorian loses all respect, dignity, and integrity that he had.
We have prepared a "The Picture of Dorian Gray" essay for you. As an English writer of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, Oscar Wilde, in his intellectual novel, "The Portrait of Dorian Gray," raises rather complicated philosophical, aesthetic, and moral problems.Download