Oscar W. Bs Essay

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Oscar Fingal O’Flahertie Wills Wilde was a man known to of lived and written for the purpose of aesthetic mystery and poetic genius. He wrote many plays and one novel, The Picture of Dorian Gray, that played a large role in shaping the literary aspect of the Victorian age. Even more interesting than his works, was the actual presence of Wilde. People found him utterly fascinating for the way he could manipulate and illuminate his words.
Wilde was born to a wealthy, intellectual family October, 16th 1884 in Dublin, Ireland. His father William was of considerable importance in high society Ireland as he was knighted the medical advisor of the Irish census. William Wilde also founded St. Mark’s Ophthalmic Hospital entirely out of pocket to serve the poor of the city in his later years. His mother, Jane Francesca Elgee, was also markedly successful and affluent, a poet and skilled linguistic closely associated to the young Ireland rebellion of 1848 (“Oscar Wilde”). With such an educated family Wilde quickly adopted the family trait. “Oscar had been studying the art of conversation ever since he was a child. He and his older brother, Willie, were allowed to sit at Sir William and Lady Wilde’s large dinner table…where the great, the good and the interesting assembled to talk.”(McKenna,4). With the influence of the most interesting people of affluent Ireland and the great charisma of his parents Wilde came into capabilities of conversation well surpassing any of his colleagues as well as an exposure to a vast political, intellectual, and philosophical pool of ideas that were passed through the halls and at the dinner table in his young life.
In school Wilde was very successful. He attended Portora Royal School at Enniskillen where he excelled as best student in Greek and Roman classical studies. He gained scholarships into Oxford for his genius in these studies, and it was there that Wilde first pursued to become enveloped in creative writing. He joined the Oxford dandy-aesthetes of the fin-de-siècle period, whom collectively honored perfection of pose, exquisiteness and dandyism of the senses. They were a sophisticated group of young men of promise, who shared a common interest in shedding highly fastidious light on art and life for the purpose of creating a new aesthetic response beyond normal conventions and cannons of thought (Calloway, 34). He was always popular and adored by his female colleagues, and quite admired by other dandies, but warded off many Oxford men and football jocks for his blatant proclamation of being profoundly bored of sports. His most alluring feature for his colleagues and admirers was the beautiful mastery he could maintain over such an energetic tongue as was his own. “His talk was intelligent articulate and incisive and, at the same time, allusive, imaginative, profound and richly poetic.” (McKenna,4). In 1878 he won the Newdigate Prize with his poem “Ravenna” for the best English verse composition by an Oxford undergraduate, and shortly after graduated.
Wilde published his first collection of poems in 1881 while living in London. He then moved to New York to give lectures around America and meet with various influential American scholars and authors. He gave 140 lectures in America only to return to Europe and commence another circuit of lectures in England and Ireland. It was through the spreading of his lectures and poems that, “Wilde established himself as a leading proponent of the aesthetic movement, a theory of art and literature that emphasized the pursuit of beauty for its own sake, rather than to promote any social or political view point.”(“Oscar Wilde”). He married in 1884 to a wealthy Englishwoman, Constance Lloyd, and they had 2 sons. From 1888 to 1895 Wilde produced a considerable amount of works at the rate of impressive creative capacity. First came a children’s story, then his tenants of aestheticism in intentions in 1891, and in that same year his novel, The