The Picture of Dorian Gray
The beauty obsession
from Dorian Gray to
nowadays
Sofia Milesi, IV lingue
the novel
genre: gothic-horror
author: Oscar Wilde
“There is no such thing as a moral or
Lippincott’sis no such thing as a...
plot

Beauty
Beauty
novel’s features
gothic novel
A genre of fiction characterized by a
mysterious atmosphere and supernatural
horror, usually...
characters

Dorian Gray
Dorian Gray

Basil Hallward
Basil Hallward

Lord Henry Wotton
Lord Henry Wotton

Sibyl Vane
Sibyl ...
beauty obsession
Beauty
Aesthetic movement
modern philosophy
girls/women

boys/men
11.7 million cosmetic surgeries
in the U.S. in 2007 (YWCA)

100$ a months for beauty products
and treatments (YWCA)

10 mi...
The End
Dorian Gray oral presentation
Dorian Gray oral presentation
Dorian Gray oral presentation
Dorian Gray oral presentation
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Dorian Gray oral presentation

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The beauty obsession from Dorian Gray to nowadays

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  • The Picture of Dorian Gray is a Gothic novel written by Oscar Wilde and published for the first time in the July 1890 issue of Lippincott ’ s Monthly Magazine. Since it was published in a magazine the novel reached a great amount of readers, but it also created a scandal, because it was considered immoral. Disappointed with its receptions Wilde revised the novel by adding 6 chapters and the Preface displaying a series of aphorisms to answer to the critics. “ There is no such thing as a moral or an immoral book. Books are well written, or badly written. That is all ”
  • The novel begins with Lord Henry Wotton observing the artist Basil Hallward painting the portrait of a handsome man, Dorian Gray. Dorian arrives later and after hearing Lord Henry ’ s worldview, begins to think beauty is the only worthwhile aspect of life
  • so he wishes that the portrait of himself would grow old on his place. He then starts to live a life of sin and lust under Lord Henry ’ s influence, until one day Dorian takes Basil to the portrait and stabs him to death
  • In the end Dorian, after trying to live in a good way, finding that the portrait has become even worse he stabs it and a servant will find Dorian ’ s dead body aged and horrible while the portrait has gained his original appearance.
  • As I said before The Picture of Dorian Gray is a Gothic novel, so let ’ s define what a gothic novel is: A genre of fiction characterized by a mysterious atmosphere and supernatural horror, usually having a pseudo-medieval setting As regards the novel in question, the story is set in two areas of London: on one side West End, the noble neighborhood, where Dorian frequents gentlemen's clubs, theaters, and symphony halls. On the other East End where the disguised Dorian steals into grotesque saloons-turned-opium-dens for an occasional high, and disgustedly rubs elbows with the various underworld characters.   Last but not least the novel is mainly marked by horror elements starting from the setting, especially the East End up to Basil ’ s murder and the portrait, since it transforms itself into a real monster
  • Dorian Gray: A handsome and wealthy young gentleman, who under Lord Henry ’ s influence, becomes extremely concerned with the transience of his beauty and starts pursuing his own pleasure above all else. He devotes himself to having as many experiences as possible, whether moral or immoral. He represents the so called “ villain ” meaning a noble man, particularly attractive so to use his beauty to seduce young women, who then become victims.   Lord Henry Wotton - A nobleman and a close friend of Basil Hallward. Lord Henry is perpetually armed and ready with well-phrased epigrams criticizing the moralism and hypocrisy of Victorian society. His pleasure-seeking philosophy of “ new Hidonism, ” which espouses garnering experiences that stimulate the senses without regard for conventional morality, plays a vital role in Dorian ’ s development.   Basil Hallward - An artist, and a friend of Lord Henry. Basil becomes obsessed with Dorian after meeting him at a party. He claims that Dorian possesses a beauty so rare that it has helped him realize a new kind of art.   Sibyl Vane - A poor, beautiful, and talented actress with whom Dorian falls in love. Sibyl ’ s love for Dorian compromises her ability to act, as her experience of true love in life makes her realize the falseness of affecting emotions onstage. She ’ s the representation of the classical gothic heroine, since she ’ s shy, helpless and victim of the villain.
  • The whole novel is centered on the concept of beauty, related to the aesthetic movement, whose purpose was pursuing pleasures and beauty so that, according to the doctrine, aging was the worst drama of life. Actually the aesthetic ideas can be still considered extremely up-to-date, since nowadays loads of people are scared of becoming old and try to do everything they can to look younger, since we live in a society in which appearance worth much more than abilities. So we can say that the “ Picture of Dorian Gray ” deals with topics that are much more current than in the past. Thus I decided to build up a comparison between some of Dorian Gray ’ s characters and their representation today
  • First of all Henry is the perfect representation of journalist, journals and television, since he ’ s the one who introduces Dorian to the aesthetic world and who convinces him that there ’ s nothing in life but beauty.
  • In fact journals and TV programs, today, by means of showing unreachable canons of beauty such as Victoria ’ s Secret top models like Adriana Lima, or actress like Blake lively and Gwyneth Paltrow, for women and actors like Channing Tatum, Chris Hemsworth and Eddie Redmayne for men induce people to become like them, even if it ’ s impossible
  • As for the novel the representation of those icons is definitely the portrait, since Dorian aims at being like his picture forever
  • Dorian is the perfect modern man, since he represents the people who everyday fight to appear like the stars they see on TV or magazines. To do so he looses his soul and ends up with a really negative consequence, which is death. Today nothing has changed that much, since maybe no one can sell his soul to the devil, but many spend every year thousand of euros in plastic surgeries, beauty centers and products Actually a survey declared that 11.7 million cosmetic surgical and non- surgical procedures were performed in the united States in 2007 and that every year women spend an average of 100$ a months for beauty products and treatments. . As for the negative consequences they go from the addiction to beauty products or treatments up to the development of illness such as anorexia and bulimia, for instance in 2007 in the U.S. 10 million women suffered from an eating disorder such as anorexia or bulimia and their worst consequence is death, exactly like Dorian
  • Dorian Gray oral presentation

    1. 1. The Picture of Dorian Gray The beauty obsession from Dorian Gray to nowadays Sofia Milesi, IV lingue
    2. 2. the novel genre: gothic-horror author: Oscar Wilde “There is no such thing as a moral or Lippincott’sis no such thing as a moral or “There Monthly Magazine an immoral book. Books are well (1890)immoral book. Books are well an written, or badly written. That is all” written, or critics -> immoral badly written. That is all” (Oscar Wilde, Preface to The Picture of Dorian Gray) (Oscar Wilde, Preface to The Picture of Dorian Gray) 6 chapters + Preface “Non esistono libri morali o “Non esistono libri morali o immorali. I libri sono scritti immorali. I libri sono scritti bene o scritti male.” Questo è bene o scritti male.” Questo è tutto. (traduzione a cura della tutto. (traduzione a cura della candidata) candidata)
    3. 3. plot Beauty Beauty
    4. 4. novel’s features gothic novel A genre of fiction characterized by a mysterious atmosphere and supernatural horror, usually having a pseudo-medieval West End London setting (The Free Dictionary) Un genere di horror elementsprosa caratterizzato da setting elementsprosa caratterizzato da Un genere di horror setting un’atmosfera misteriosa e dall’horror un’atmosfera misteriosa e dall’horror East End solitamente si svolge in sovrannaturale, che solitamente si svolge in sovrannaturale, che London un ambiente pseudo-medievale (traduzione a cura un ambiente pseudo-medievale (traduzione a cura della candidata) della candidata)
    5. 5. characters Dorian Gray Dorian Gray Basil Hallward Basil Hallward Lord Henry Wotton Lord Henry Wotton Sibyl Vane Sibyl Vane
    6. 6. beauty obsession Beauty Aesthetic movement modern philosophy
    7. 7. girls/women boys/men
    8. 8. 11.7 million cosmetic surgeries in the U.S. in 2007 (YWCA) 100$ a months for beauty products and treatments (YWCA) 10 million women suffer from an eating disorder such as anorexia or bulimia in the U.S. in 2007 (YWCA)
    9. 9. The End
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