The Picture of Dorian Gray

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The Picture of Dorian Gray is the only published novel by Oscar Wilde, appearing as the lead story in Lippincott's Monthly Magazine. The magazine's editors feared the story was indecent as submitted, so they censored roughly 500 words, without Wilde's knowledge, before publication. But even with that, the story was still greeted with outrage by British reviewers, some of whom suggested that Wilde should be prosecuted on moral grounds, leading Wilde to defend the novel aggressively in letters to the British press.

The novel tells of a young man named Dorian Gray, the subject of a painting by artist Basil Hallward. Basil is impressed by Dorian's beauty and becomes infatuated with him, believing his beauty is responsible for a new mode in his art. Dorian meets Lord Henry Wotton, a friend of Basil's, and becomes enthralled by Lord Henry's world view. Espousing a new hedonism, Lord Henry suggests the only things worth pursuing in life are beauty and fulfillment of the senses. Realizing that one day his beauty will fade, Dorian (whimsically) expresses a desire to sell his soul to ensure the portrait Basil has painted would age rather than he. Dorian's wish is fulfilled, and when he subsequently pursues a life of debauchery, the portrait serves as a reminder of the effect each act has upon his soul, with each sin displayed as a disfigurement of his form, or through a sign of aging.

The Picture of Dorian Gray is considered a work of classic Gothic fiction with a strong Faustian theme.
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Additional Information

Publisher
BookRix
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Published on
Apr 25, 2018
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Pages
317
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ISBN
9783736800809
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Language
English
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Genres
Fiction / General
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Read Aloud
Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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This carefully crafted ebook is formatted for your eReader with a functional and detailed table of contents of the complete works of Oscar Wilde, containing more than 150 works. Oscar Fingal O'Flahertie Wills Wilde (1854 – 1900) was an Irish writer and poet. After writing in different forms throughout the 1880s, he became one of London's most popular playwrights in the early 1890s. Today he is remembered for his epigrams and plays, and the circumstances of his imprisonment which was followed by his early death. At the turn of the 1890s, he refined his ideas about the supremacy of art in a series of dialogues and essays, and incorporated themes of decadence, duplicity, and beauty into his only novel, The Picture of Dorian Gray (1890). The opportunity to construct aesthetic details precisely, and combine them with larger social themes, drew Wilde to write drama. He wrote Salome (1891) in French in Paris but it was refused a licence. Unperturbed, Wilde produced four society comedies in the early 1890s, which made him one of the most successful playwrights of late Victorian London. At the height of his fame and success, while his masterpiece, The Importance of Being Earnest (1895), was still on stage in London, Wilde had the Marquess of Queensberry, the father of his lover, Lord Alfred Douglas, prosecuted for libel, a charge carrying a penalty of up to two years in prison. The trial unearthed evidence that caused Wilde to drop his charges and led to his own arrest and trial for gross indecency with other men. After two more trials he was convicted and imprisoned for two years' hard labour. In 1897, in prison, he wrote De Profundis which was published in 1905, a long letter which discusses his spiritual journey through his trials, forming a dark counterpoint to his earlier philosophy of pleasure. Upon his release he left immediately for France, never to return to Ireland or Britain. There he wrote his last work, The Ballad of Reading Gaol (1898), a long poem commemorating the harsh rhythms of prison life. He died destitute in Paris at the age of forty-six. Content: The Plays: VERA, THE DUCHESS OF PADUA, LADY WINDERMERE’S FAN, A WOMAN OF NO IMPORTANCE, SALOMÉ, SALOME (English Version), AN IDEAL HUSBAND, THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING EARNEST. The Poetry: more than 100 poems. The Novel: THE PICTURE OF DORIAN GRAY, including THE REVISED 20 CHAPTER VERSION. The Short Stories: THE PORTRAIT OF MR. W. H., THE HAPPY PRINCE AND OTHER TALES, A HOUSE OF POMEGRANATES, LORD ARTHUR SAVILE’S CRIME AND OTHER STORIES. The Non-Fiction: THE DECAY OF LYING, PEN, PENCIL AND POISON — A STUDY IN GREEN, THE CRITIC AS ARTIST, THE TRUTH OF MASKS, THE RISE OF HISTORICAL CRITICISM, THE ENGLISH RENAISSANCE OF ART, HOUSE DECORATION, ART AND THE HANDICRAFTSMAN, LECTURE TO ART STUDENTS, LONDON MODELS, POEMS IN PROSE, THE SOUL OF MAN UNDER SOCIALISM, PHRASES AND PHILOSOPHIES FOR THE USE OF THE YOUNG, A FEW MAXIMS FOR THE INSTRUCTION OF THE OVER-EDUCATED, DE PROFUNDIS, OSCAR WILDE’S LETTER TO ROBERT BROWNING, PERSONAL IMPRESSIONS OF AMERICA, THE DECORATIVE ARTS, THE HOUSE BEAUTIFUL, THE TRUTH OF MASKS. The Journalism: A HANDBOOK TO MARRIAGE, A RIDE THROUGH MOROCCO, ARISTOTLE AT AFTERNOON TEA, BALZAC IN ENGLISH, DINNERS AND DISHES, HAMLET AT THE LYCEUM, LONDON MODELS, MR MORRIS ON TAPESTRY, MR WHISTLER’S TEN O’CLOCK, MRS LANGTRY AS HESTER GRAZEBROOK, OLIVIA AT THE LYCEUM, THE AMERICAN INVASION, TWO BIOGRAPHIES OF KEATS, TWO LETTERS TO THE DAILY CHRONICLE, WOMAN’S DRESS. Apocrypha: TELENY.
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