Oscar Fingal O'Flaherty Wills Wilde (1854-1900)
La Prosa <ul><li>In the centre of the room, clamped to an upright easel, stood the full-length portrait of a young man of extraordinary personal beauty, and in front of it, some little distance away, was sitting the artist himself, Basil Hallward, .... "I hate them for it,"cried Hallward. "An artist should create beautiful things, but should put nothing of his own life into them. We live in an age when men treat art as if it were meant to be a form of autobiography. We have lost the abstract sense of beauty. Some day I will show the world what it is; and for that reason the world shall never see my portrait of Dorian Gray ."-- Ch. 1 </li></ul>Irish dramatist, poet, and author in 1891 he wrote The Picture of Dorian Gray ; A
Il Romanzo A dandy, eccentric, extravagant life If Pater was the father of ENGLISH AESTHETICISM, his true aspostle was Oscar Wilde. Born in Dublin 1854 Studied at Oxford University from 1874 to 1879 Strongly influenced by Pater and the French Aesthetes But if the ideal hero of the Aesthete was one who lives withdrawn from mankind in a private world of refined and precious sensastions, WILDE was not the kind of man to shut himself up in aristocratic ISOLATION. “ Experience is the name that everyone give to his mistakes " O. Wilde
Il Romanzo A dandy, eccentric, extravagant life eager for publicity He was inclined to look upon the WORLD AS A STAGE on which He intended to PLAY A LEADING ROLE ECCENTRIC BEHAVIOUR (used to dress in the most bizarre fashion walked up and down Piccadilly Circus with a lily and a sunflower in his hands Refined and sophisticated manners Brilliant and paradoxical conversations “ Experience is the name that everyone give to his mistakes " O. Wilde
Il Romanzo A dandy, eccentric, extravagant life Family = upper class Sir William Wilde = the father (= an important surgeon) Mother , known with pen.name “Speranza”, a writer for the radical newspaper “The Nation” Childhood = carefree and happy, but somehow influenced by Speranza, His Mother EDUCATION = also upper class (Trinity College, Dublin, then Oxford, Magdalene College (Classical Literature) “ Experience is the name that everyone give to his mistakes " O. Wilde
Il Romanzo A dandy, eccentric, extravagant life When Willde left Oxford, he said the prophetic lines: “ I’ll be a poet, a writer, a dramatist. Somehow or other i?ll be famous, and if not famous, I’ll be notorious (= famigerato, tristemente famoso) “ Experience is the name that everyone give to his mistakes " O. Wilde His main objective = to go against the narrow mindedness and so-called “respectability” of the English society. He in fact became NOTORIOUS before really proving his worth as a writer Often atttacked by the serious victorian critics and ofted ridiculed Endless caricatures (= dressed as a woman or as a pig)
Il Romanzo A dandy, eccentric, extravagant life “ Experience is the name that everyone give to his mistakes " O. Wilde 1881: to America to give various lectures on Aestheticism. On his arrival in the NEW WORLD, when the customer officer asked him if he had anything to declare, he answered in his WITTY WAY: “ NOTHING BUT MY GENIUS” Americans= Amazed at this eccentric man dressed in velvet and acting so flamboyantly.
Il Romanzo WILDE = A SOCIAL EVENT “ Soon became a FASHIONABLE FIGURE IN LONDON thanks to his WIT – BRILLIANT CONVERSATION, AFFECTED PARADOXED By the end of the 70s he was sourght after for his ability to enliven Social gathering: a GREAT THEATRE-GOER, A GREAT TALKER He travelled to Europe, in France and Greece. He was invited in the USA to give a tour of lectures
Il Romanzo WILDE = A SOCIAL EVENT “ His presence = a social event -- he could tell FAIRY TALES, MAKE COMMENTS ON FASHION AND PLAY, INVENT STORIES AND INTERPRET FAMOUS WORKS 1884: met Constance, a wealthy, aristocratic woman - Two sons Unfortunately, the marriage was not very successful He felt stifty within the walls of routine existence In this frustrated and disillusioned frame he met Robert Ross, with whom he developed a life-long relationship
Il Romanzo WILDE = A SOCIAL EVENT “ Wilde fell in love tih Ross – they became lovers Their physical love developed to friendship and lasted until Wilde’s death In the meantime Wilde became famous not only for his eccentricity, but also for his written word. His literary output = ENORMOUS 1891: met LORD DOUGLAS, a good-looking university student The two became lovers, but their relationshi = distaster 1891: met LORD DOUGLAS’ father took him to COURT and after various trials WILDE was arrested in 1895 on charges of indecency - 2 years prison and hard labour
Il Romanzo Ever the aesthete Ever the aesthete, Wilde himself was profoundly affected by beauty lived and dressed flamboyantly compared to the typical Victorian styles of the time. He was often publicly caricatured in Europe and America. His writings such as Dorian Gray also brought much controversy for him. he was part of the ever-growing movement of 'decadents ' who advocated pacifism , social reform , and libertarianism . “ Experience is the name that everyone give to his mistakes " O. Wilde
Il Romanzo Ever the aesthete While many vilified him, he was making his mark with style and wit and enjoyed much success with many of his plays. Wilde was lauded by and acquainted with many influential figures of the day including fellow playwright George Bernard Shaw , American poets Walt Whitman and Henry Wadsworth Longfellow . His works have inspired countless fellow authors, have been translated to numerous languages, and have been adapted to the stage and screen many times over. Fiction by Wilde includes The Canterville Ghost (1887), The Happy Prince and Other Tales (1888), A House of Pomegranates (1891), Lord Arthur Savile's Crime (1891), and Intentions (essays, 1891). His plays include Vera, or the Nihilists (1880), The Duchess of Padua (1883), Lady Windermere's Fan (1892), A Florentine Tragedy ( La Sainte Courtisane 1893), A Woman of No Importance (1893), Salomé (1894), An Ideal Husband (1895), and The Importance of Being Earnest (1895).
Il Teatro THE AESTHETIC MOVEMENT <ul><li>It may be considered somehow a reaction against the PRAGMATISM, MATERIALMS and UTILITARIANISM of the Victorian age </li></ul><ul><li>The followers of the new movement – SUPREME VALUES = CULT OF BEAUTY, THE RELIGION OF ART. </li></ul><ul><li>They refused to subordinate ART to MORAL_, SOCIAL, RELIGIOUS, DIDACTIC ENDS </li></ul>
La Poesia <ul><li>ART = HAS NO OTHER END BUT ITSELF </li></ul><ul><li>This concept may be summorised in the concept of “ART FOR ART’S SAKE”, taken over from Theophile Gautier and the French Parnassian poets </li></ul><ul><li>Immediate antecedents = the pre-Raphaelite movement and the critical writings and poems of SWINBURNE </li></ul>ASTHETICISM