The Picture Of Dorian Gray Essay

The Picture Of Dorian Gray Essay

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Homosexuality in The Picture of Dorian Gray
The Picture of Dorian Gray is a well renowned book written by Oscar Wilde. When first published in July of 1880, the novel was edited and many passages were taken out by the British magazine, Lippincott’s Monthly Magazine. These passages that were deleted, included an explicit homosexual relationship between two of the three main characters, Basil Hallward and Dorian Gray. During the 1880’s, the subject matter of the book was not acceptable to society’s standards. At the time, only men and women married and even the thought of the same sex marrying was detestable. Not only was this behavior frowned upon, but it was illegal and could get you arrested. Because of this, most homosexuals kept quiet and hid their true feelings. Being that Oscar Wilde is assumed to be one of these men that hid their feelings, expressing himself through writing may have been his only resort to making him feel better. Through creating the two characters, Basil and Dorian, he was able to alleviate some of his homosexual feelings.
When writing this book, Wilde made sure to make Dorian seem as dreamy as possible. Dorian was critiqued to be the perfect guy, young, rich, and beautiful. Wilde describes that “he was certainly wonderfully handsome, with his finely curved scarlet lips, his frank blue eyes, his crisp gold hair. There was something in his face that made one trust him at once. All the candour of youth was there, as well as all youth 's passionate purity. One felt that he had kept himself unspotted from the world. No wonder Basil Hallward worshipped him” (18). Anyone would easily fall for a young man like Dorian. Basil noticed his beauty, though they had never talked to one another. He only knew of him by...


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... hand, there have been other opinions that say that the two may have just been very good friends. There is no for sure way to tell, only speculation whether or not the characters were involved romantically. Everyone has a different way of interpreting things and this particular subject may be one of them. Today, being a homosexual and writing about a homosexual relationship is much more accepted compared to how it was in the late 1800’s. He seemed to have a passion for love but, at the same time, he did not seem to like marriage as much. Wilde believed that “one should always be in love. That is the reason one should never marry.” Being that he was unhappy in his marriage, it makes sense to quote such. The relationships he was wanting to have, were looked negatively upon. By creating Dorian Gray and Basil Hallward, he was able to live out the way he dreamed to live.

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