Friday, 15 February 2013

Thoughts: The Picture of Dorian Grey

The plot is all that matters in this book. The beautiful Dorian Grey stands for a picture and while being painted prays for eternal good looks. As a consequence the picture ages and fades while he stays the young Adonis "made out of ivory and rose leaves". Influence by the witty Lord Henry he starts to lead a corrupt life.
Unfortunately the book starts out promising but as soon as the premises are over the book starts to dwell on uninteresting details and takes forever to get to the end. I was already warned of that by my team mates. Nonetheless the book offers a lot of possibilities for the exploration of the nature of good and evil in human beings. But the author never follows them until a conclusion can be formed. The language though is picturesque and all characters in this book are described in a unique satisfying way. One woman for example is described as "so dreadfully dowdy that she reminded one of a badly bound hymn book".
Oscar Wildes one and only book is an attempt at Gothic horror and was received badly at the time (in 1890) and caused a scandal. For our nowadays callousness the book causes us no such impression. But I am certainly glad I read it. To me especially Wilde's cynicism appealed and made me smile.

1 comment:

  1. I heard that Benjamin Button was based on this.