THE DECAY OF LYING

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The Decay Of Lying And Other Essays

Author : Oscar Wilde
ISBN : 9780141958354
Genre : Literary Collections
File Size : 60.50 MB
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In 'The Decay of Lying' Oscar Wilde uses his decadent ideology in an attempt to reverse and therefore reject his audiences' 'normal' conceptualizations of nature, art and morality. Wilde's views of life and art are illustrated through the use of Platonic dialogue where the character Vivian takes on the persona of Wilde. Wilde's goal is to subvert the norm by reversing its values. Wilde suggests to us that society is wrong, not him. Calling on diverse examples - from Ancient Greek sculpture to contemporary paintings - Oscar Wilde's brilliant essay creates a witty, paradoxical world in which the only Art worth loving is that built on complete untruths.
Category: Literary Collections

Oscar Wilde

Author : Andrea Seeler
ISBN : OCLC:699142192
Genre :
File Size : 43.90 MB
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The Decay Of Lying

Author : Oscar Wilde
ISBN :
Genre : Fiction
File Size : 79.48 MB
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THE DECAY OF LYING A DIALOGUE. Persons: Cyril and Vivian. Scene: the Library of a country house in Nottinghamshire. CYRIL (coming in through the open window from the terrace). My dear Vivian, don't coop yourself up all day in the library. It is a perfectly lovely afternoon. The air is exquisite. There is a mist upon the woods, like the purple bloom upon a plum. Let us go and lie on the grass and smoke cigarettes and enjoy Nature. VIVIAN. Enjoy Nature! I am glad to say that I have entirely lost that faculty. People tell us that Art makes us love Nature more than we loved her before; that it reveals her secrets to us; and that after a careful study of Corot and Constable we see things in her that had escaped our observation. My own experience is that the more we study Art, the less we care for Nature. What Art really reveals to us is Nature's lack of design, her curious crudities, her extraordinary monotony, her absolutely unfinished condition. Nature has good intentions, of course, but, as Aristotle once said, she cannot carry them out. When I look at a landscape I cannot help seeing all its defects. It is fortunate for us, however, that Nature is so imperfect, as otherwise we should have no art at all. Art is our spirited protest, our gallant attempt to teach Nature her proper place. As for the infinite variety of Nature, that is a pure myth. It is not to be found in Nature herself. It resides in the imagination, or fancy, or cultivated blindness of the man who looks at her. CYRIL. Well, you need not look at the landscape. You can lie on the grass and smoke and talk. VIVIAN. But Nature is so uncomfortable. Grass is hard and lumpy and damp, and full of dreadful black insects. Why, even Morris's poorest workman could make you a more comfortable seat than the whole of Nature can. Nature pales before the furniture of 'the street which from Oxford has borrowed its name,' as the poet you love so much once vilely phrased it. I don't complain. If Nature had been comfortable, mankind would never have invented architecture, and I prefer houses to the open air. In a house we all feel of the proper proportions. Everything is subordinated to us, fashioned for our use and our pleasure. Egotism itself, which is so necessary to a proper sense of human dignity, is entirely the result of indoor life. Out of doors one becomes abstract and impersonal. One's individuality absolutely leaves one. And then Nature is so indifferent, so unappreciative. Whenever I am walking in the park here, I always feel that I am no more to her than the cattle that browse on the slope, or the burdock that blooms in the ditch. Nothing is more evident than that Nature hates Mind. Thinking is the most unhealthy thing in the world, and people die of it just as they die of any other disease. Fortunately, in England at any rate, thought is not catching. Our splendid physique as a people is entirely due to our national stupidity. I only hope we shall be able to keep this great historic bulwark of our happiness for many years to come; but I am afraid that we are beginning to be over-educated; at least everybody who is incapable of learning has taken to teaching - that is really what our enthusiasm for education has come to. In the meantime, you had better go back to your wearisome uncomfortable Nature, and leave me to correct my proofs.
Category: Fiction

Oscar Wilde

Author : Bruce Bashford
ISBN : 0838637698
Genre : Literary Criticism
File Size : 79.47 MB
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Through a discussion of critical works, including The Decay of Lying and De Profundis, Bashford demonstrates the theoretical goals Wilde set for himself in his criticism and how he achieved them.
Category: Literary Criticism

Cosmopolitan Criticism

Author : Julia Prewitt Brown
ISBN : 081391888X
Genre : Literary Criticism
File Size : 66.4 MB
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This text attempts to define Wilde's conceptions of what art is and is not, what the experience of art means, and the relations between the work of art and the sphere of the ethical everyday. It traces his thought from its resonance in his life through its development within aesthetic philosophy.
Category: Literary Criticism

Wilde S Intentions

Author : Lawrence Danson
ISBN : 0198186282
Genre : Literary Criticism
File Size : 66.90 MB
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What were Wilde's intentions? They had always been suspect, from the time of Poems, when the charge was plagiarism, to his trials, when the charge was sodomy. In Intentions (1891), the book on which his claim as a theoretical critic chiefly lies, and in two related essays, 'The Portrait of Mr W. H., and 'The Soul of Man Under Socialism', Wilde's epigrammatic dazzle and paradoxical subversions both reveal and mask his designs upon fin-de-siecle society. In the first extended study of Wilde's criticism, Lawrence Danson examines these essays/dialogues/fictions (unsettling the categories was one of their intentions) and assesses their achievement. Danson sets Wilde's criticism in context. He shows how the son of an Irish patriot sought to create a new ideal of English culture by elevating 'lies' above history, levelling the distinction between artist and critic, and ending the sway of 'nature' over liberated human desire.
Category: Literary Criticism

European Literature From Romanticism To Postmodernism

Author : Martin Travers
ISBN : 0826447481
Genre : Literary Criticism
File Size : 34.91 MB
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An anthology of key theoretical writings by the major representatives of the schools and movements of European literature. Each chapter in this book is devoted to one particular school of movement from within a body of literature, from romanticism, realism and modernism through to the literature of political engagement of the 1920s and 1930s.
Category: Literary Criticism

Intentions

Author : Oscar Wilde
ISBN : 9781775414698
Genre : Literary Collections
File Size : 73.53 MB
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Oscar Wilde was one of the most successful playwrights of the Victorian era. He was also a notorious supporter of the decadence and aesthetic movements, eventually jailed for having a young male lover. His name remains a by-word for social commentary by sharp wit. Intentions is a collection of critical essays by Wilde including The Critic as artist, The Decay of Lying, Pen, Pencil and Poison and The Truth of Masks.
Category: Literary Collections