The Importance of Being Earnest Essay

The Importance of Being Earnest Essay

Length: 1239 words (3.5 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Strong Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

It has been said that ‘Comedy, beginning in turmoil but ending in harmony, celebrates life.’ and this is the general idea with ‘The Importance of Being Earnest’ Wilde proves that this comedy of manners does conform to this model. As Lady Bracknell tries to prolong the resolution and tries to prevent the marriage between Jack and Gwendolyn, she can be seen as a ‘gorgon’ because she refuses to let Gwendolyn marry Jack. Despite this, She may be seen as a heroine because she is a strong, commanding woman who isn’t passive like traditional Victorian women as she makes decisions which indicates that she has power within the play. Furthermore, Wilde has constructed her in such a way that she dominates the company wherever she is present and judges people according to their wealth even though she is from a non-aristocratic background. Therefore, Lady Bracknell may be viewed as a character that stays ‘bad’. Despite the obstacles surrounding Lady Bracknell, there are some aspects throughout the play which do conform to this model. For instance, Jack faces problems during the play which are then resolved through his actions and are consequently followed by happiness in the resolution when he finds out ‘the vital Importance of Being Earnest’ . Similarly, the same can be said for Algernon who lies to please the women that he desires to achieve happiness in Act 3. Therefore, depending on each character and their actions beforehand, they either face happiness or distress which indicates that comedy does have some elements of movement from distress to happiness and from ‘bad’ to ‘good’.
In ‘The Importance of Being Earnest’ Jack is presented as a character that has lied to get what he wants and because of this he has been given faults. Here Joc...


... middle of paper ...


...d’ or bad’.
In essence, this comedy of manners does have traces of movement from distress to happiness as all the characters within the play were either involved in ‘good’ or ‘bad’ affairs. But despite this, in the resolution Jack learnt from his mistakes which resulted in happiness for him and Gwendolyn as she got married to a person named Earnest. Similarly, Cecily also got married which resulted in celebration, but as Algernon didn’t tell her the truth about his name he hadn’t reformed in the process which indicates that he did stay ‘bad’. Likewise, Lady Bracknell also stayed distressed when she was not part of any comic resolution. As this is the case, ‘The Importance of Being Earnest’ does conform to this model, but this movement from ‘good’ to ‘bad’ is dependent on the different characters that Wilde has constructed and the situations that they went through.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Essay on The Importance Of Being Earnest By Oscar Wilde

- Throughout The Importance of Being Earnest, Oscar Wilde plays around with the standard expectations along with the absence of compassion of a Victorian society in the 1890’s, he demonstrates this through several genres of comedy such as Melodrama, Comedy of Manners, Farce, dark humour and Irony, as well as portraying the themes, death and illness, in this play in a brilliance of unusual amount of references. Death is an unstoppable event that occurs in every individual’s life, and yet it is a very taboo topic as people rarely broach the subject because it causes incredible distress; it is certainly not a comical topic of conversation and one that is very seldom and rarely congratulated....   [tags: Comedy, The Importance of Being Earnest]

Strong Essays
1354 words (3.9 pages)

The Importance Of Being Earnest By Oscar Wilde Essay

- Oscar Wilde’s ‘The Importance of Being Earnest’ can be perceived as either a seemingly satirical piece aimed at the upper class society of the 1890s with a darker nature underneath or as a play “which imitates nothing, represents nothing” and “is nothing.” (William Archer). However, I believe it is the former – a belief fuelled by the comedic features used in the interview scene between Lady Bracknell and Jack Worthing. Wilde convinces the audience to believing that there is something empowering and different about Lady Bracknell as she interviews Jack as opposed to her husband, demonstrating that women in her generation are in charge despite the ‘separate spheres’ debate....   [tags: Comedy, The Importance of Being Earnest]

Strong Essays
1219 words (3.5 pages)

The Importance Of Being Earnest By Oscar Wilde Essays

- The Importance of Being Earnest, written by Oscar Wilde, pokes fun at the Victorian earnestness with sarcasm. The first piece of wit shown by Mr. Wilde is in the subtitle when he writes, “A Trivial Comedy for Serious People.” He continues to make general quips and witty remarks throughout the play, all the while prodding at the Victorian people. Mr. Wilde’s purpose of writing this play is to show how strict society is, how superficial everyone is in society, and how certain individuals do not agree with their society....   [tags: Victorian era, The Importance of Being Earnest]

Strong Essays
1324 words (3.8 pages)

Essay on The Importance of Being Earnest, by Oscar Wilde

- In The Importance of Being Earnest Oscar Wilde revealed that animalistic traits can tint a character’s intellectual attributes. All of the characters possess an overwhelming desire which seems to diminish their morality. Wilde uses Jack Worthing’s animalistic behaviors to reveal that his animal self is damaging his intellectual self. The play is presented to show that the characters retain an exaggerated pleasure with food, which shows their pleasures in inanimate objects. Every character in the play is drawn into lustful relationships, thus mutilating their psychological self....   [tags: the importance of being earnest, oscar wilde]

Strong Essays
1261 words (3.6 pages)

The Importance Of Being Earnest Driven By The Idea Of Serious Triviality

- To what extent is The Importance of Being Earnest driven by the idea of Serious Triviality. Oscar Wilde stated, in relation to his play The Importance of Being Earnest that “We should treat all the trivial things of life seriously, and all the serious things of life with sincere and studied triviality.” This reflects the ideas behind the play and the way that Wilde presents his characters, and their actions throughout the course of the play. This philosophy influenced many important themes throughout the play, most notably the presentation of class, as well as Satire and Comic Pairings....   [tags: The Importance of Being Earnest, Sociology]

Strong Essays
1263 words (3.6 pages)

Comic Devices in The Importance of Being Earnest, by Oscar Wilde Essay

- The Importance of Being Earnest is a comedy of manners that is used to parody social aspects of a Victorian society. Wilde does this by incorporating farcical elements that would appear ludicrous to an audience and satirises Victorian social norms and values. Wilde also subverts the ideals of marriage by undermining the concept as a whole and at the same time he inverts traditional gender roles and class in society. Wilde has included serious and controversial subjects such as the influence of religion which implies Wilde’s comedy is not a game but a serious criticism of Victorian society....   [tags: The Importance of Being Earnest]

Strong Essays
1687 words (4.8 pages)

The Dichotomy of Honesty in Oscar Wilde's The Importance of Being Earnest

- Oscar Wilde's, "The Importance of Being Earnest" revolves around the dichotomy of the true definition of honesty versus the victorian definition of honesty. It is apparent that Wilde's opinion is that true honesty is expressed through being genuine to one's self as opposed to putting on a front as is important in victorian ideals. In this work, Wilde uses humor to off-set the seriousness of the theme of the story. One who has studied this work can also clearly see that Wilde is using sarcasm to say things that would not have been accepted by society if they were said bluntly....   [tags: The Importance of Being Earnest]

Strong Essays
537 words (1.5 pages)

Essay on Not Being Earnest in The Importance of Being Earnest

- Not Being Earnest in The Importance of Being Earnest While some critics contend that The Importance of Being Earnest is completely fanciful and has no relation to the real world, others maintain that Oscar Wilde's "trivial comedy for serious people" does make significant comments about social class and the institution of marriage. These observations include the prevalent utilization of deceit in everyday affairs. Indeed the characters and plot of the play appear to be entirely irreverent, thus lending weight to the comedic, fanciful aspect....   [tags: The Importance of Being Earnest]

Strong Essays
866 words (2.5 pages)

Absurdity and Satire in The Importance of Being Earnest Essay

- Absurdity and Satire in The Importance of Being Earnest In Oscar Wilde's The Importance of Being Earnest, much is made of societal expectations, protocols, as well as the inversions of these expectations. A character, Jack Worthing, adopts an alter ego when going into town to avoid keeping up with the serious and morally upright behaviour that is expected of him as guardian to his eighteen-year-old ward, Cecily. Another character, Algernon Moncrieff, makes up an invalid friend Bunbury whose grave health conditions provide him with the excuse to escape to the country as and when he pleases....   [tags: Importance of Being Earnest]

Strong Essays
1685 words (4.8 pages)

Essay on Oscar Wilde's The Importance Of Being Earnest

- Oscar Wilde's The Importance Of Being Earnest Setting: Begins in a flat in London then proceeds to a manor house in the countryside in the late 1800's. Plot: Two men, John Jack Earnest Worthing and Algernon Moncrieff, use the deception [a Bunbury] that both their names were Ernest, in order to secure marriage to the women they love, Gwendolen Fairfax and Cecily Cardew. Then there is the ultimate unraveling of their lies, which still ends in their impending nuptials.Cast of Key CharactersJohn Jack Ernest Worthing"Bon-vivant" [Jack to Algernon 2] Algernon is asking Jack what brought him to town....   [tags: Importance Being Earnest Wilde Essays]

Strong Essays
4849 words (13.9 pages)