Theme in "The Picture of Dorian Gray"
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This paper discusses several aspects of the central theme of "The Picture of Dorian Gray" and notes that this work cannot be appreciated unless the reader's personal philosophy contains some degree of dualism, since the theme is that the soul is far more significant than physical beauty. The paper analyzes the symbolism Wilde uses and highlights the message that the person's inner self is involved in the production of his meaning, whereas his outer appearance is superficial.
From the Paper:""The Picture of Dorian Gray" cannot be appreciated unless the reader's personal philosophy contains some degree of dualism, since the theme is that the soul is far more significant than physical beauty. The Judaic-Christian tradition holds that the soul-body dichotomy corresponds to the contrast between an expensive gift and the wrapping. The particular action that evolves in this work cannot be credible unless the reader subscribes to a similar view. For Plato, for example, the symbolism of the painting's transformation could not make sense. As Basil states at the beginning: "I tell you, what I have done of him is the best work of my life. We've all invented a realism that is vulgar or an ideality that's void. Dorian Gray is a new harmony" (Wilde 21). He represents the odd harmony of us all - except that the dualism within becomes overtly expressed."
Cite this Analytical Essay:
Theme in "The Picture of Dorian Gray" (2003, September 23) Retrieved August 18, 2019, from https://www.academon.com/analytical-essay/theme-in-the-picture-of-dorian-gray-35193/
"Theme in "The Picture of Dorian Gray"" 23 September 2003. Web. 18 August. 2019. <https://www.academon.com/analytical-essay/theme-in-the-picture-of-dorian-gray-35193/>