Oscar Wilde: ribelle e dandy

Vita e opere di Oscar Wilde e la distinzione tra la figura del ribelle e quella del "dandy" (1 pagine formato doc)

Appunto di fagio82


Oscar Wilde.

Oscar Wilde was born in Dublin in 1854. After attendig Trinity College, he was sent to Oxford where he gained a first class degree in Classics and distingueshed himself for his eccentricity. He accepted the teory of “Art for Art’s sake”. He settled in London where he became a fashionable figure of Dandy, for this he was parodied by some writers of satire.  
In 1881 he edited some poems and also he was engaged for a tour in the U.S.A. where he had remarkable personal success especially for his irony.
Later he writed a series of short stories for children, and the novel “The picture of Dorian Gray”.
After his first and only novel he developed an interest in drama and produced a series of plays. However both the novel and the tragedy damaged the writer’s reputation, since the former was considered immoral, and the latter was prevented from appearing on the London stage owing to its alleged obscenity. Wilde dared to have a homosexual affair, and for this he was sent to prison. He died in Paris in 1900.

Oscar Wilde: vita, opere e stile


The rebel and the “Dandy”. Wilde totally adopted “the aesthetic ideal” lived dividing his time between high society and “bohemian” circles, in the double role of rebel and dandy. The Dandy must be distinguished from the bohemian: while the bohemian allies himself to the masses, the dandy is a bourgeois artist who remains a member of his class.
The Wildean dandy is an aristocrat whose elegance is a simbol of the superiority of his spirit; he uses his wit to shock and is an individualist who demands absolute freedom. Since life was meant for pleasure, and pleasure was an indulgence in the beautiful, beautiful clothes, talks and delicious food and handsome boys were the main interests of Wilde.

Art for Art’s Sake. The concept of Art of Art’s Sake was a moral imperative and merely and aesthetic one. Wilde believed that only Art as the cult of beauty could prevent the murder of the soul. Wilde perceived the artist as an alien in a materialistic world. His pursuit of beauty and fulfillment was the tragic act of a superior beign inevitably turned into an outcast.

The Plot. Dorian is a young man whose beauty fashinates a painter, Basil, who decides to portray him. The artist puts in the portrait the eternal youth, the signs of age, experience and vice, and so Dorian lives only for pleasure making use of every body and letting people die because of his insensitivity. When the painter sees the corrupted image of the portrait Dorian kills him. So he wants to free himself of the portrait and stabs it, but he misteriously kills himself. In the very moment of death the picture returns to its original purity.

Narrative technique. The story is told by an unobtrusive third person narrator, the perspective adopted is internal and this allows a process of identification between the reader and the character. The settings are descripted with word appealing to the senses.


The typical dandy. The typical dandy, Dorian, thinks that man should live is life in full realizing his wishes and his dreams; if one check one’s impulses, life is marred because every repressed impulse and all self denial remain in one’s mind and poisons it. Dorian believes youth is synonymous with beauty and happiness.