The aesthetic movement: riassunto

Breve riassunto in inglese dell'Estetismo in Inghilterra, con confronti tra Oscar Wilde, Gabriele D'Annunzio e Joris Karl Huysmans (1 pagine formato doc)

Appunto di 9upsy0


This artistical, cultural and social movement started during the 1870s.

It had many contacts with French Symbolism and Decadentism.
Aestheticims”= greek word meaning “senses”  the purpose of Aesthets was to try as many sensual experiences as possible through the senses.
They consider the poet Keats as an inspirer (eg. “La Belle Dame sans Merci”).
The main principal was that of “art for art’s sake”, which means that art had no moral purpose, it had just to create Beauty.
Beauty was the highets perfection of human endeavour and its essence was represented by the Form.

Aesthetic Movement: riassunto in inglese


The manifesto of the movement, expressing other principles, were the preface of Wilde’s “The picture of Dorian Gray” (1891):
- The artist is a creator of beautiful things
- To reveal art and conceal the artist is art’s aim
- The critic is he who can translate into another matter or a new material his impression of beautiful things
- There is no such thing as a moral or an immoral book. Books are well written or badly written. That is all.
- No artist has ethical symphaties. N ethical symphaty in an artist is an unpardonable mannerism of style.
- No artist is ever morbid. The artist can express everything.
- Vice and virtue are to the artist materials for an art
- It is the spectator, and not life, that art really mirrors.
- Diversity of opinion about a work of art shows that the work is new, complex and vital.


Aesthetic writers led very unconventional lives, pursuing pleasure in all its forms and experiencing new sensations by devoting themselves to the cult of Beauty and Art. This was a rebellion against the hypocrisy, moralism, prudishness, strictness, monotony and low quality life of the family-centred Victorian society.
Aestheticism included may forms of art, as literature, music, painting, because they could all produce delightful sensations.
Walter Pater (an English scholar) wrote “Studies in the History of the Renaissance” (1873), which particularly influenced the whole Aesthetic Movement and Wilde.


Oscar Wilde  expressed his ideas about Art and artists in a letter: he wrote that Art had nor practical neither didactical purpose, as it wasn’t meant to instruct or to be useful. When an artist created a work, it was only for his personal pleasure and he did it only fot this pleasure’s sake. The artist worked with his eye on the object: nothing else interested him, even what people were likely to say.
In his opinion, “all art was quite useless”: art had no pratical, didactical, descriptive, political or social role.
Wilde was considered a “dandy”: he was a very elegant man who gave grat importance to his appeareance, to his refined and eccentric lifestyle and to brilliant conversations, as he wanted life to be a work of art. His Aesthetic ideas pervade his novel “The Picture of Dorian Gray” (1891).