Essay PreviewMore ↓
At the beginning of The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde, Basil paints a portrait of Dorian Gray. Throughout the novel, Dorian is viewed and is treated by the world as art. As art, Dorian is constantly changed by the influences of his different artists. The most influential and main artist of Dorian is Lord Henry. Lord Henry corrupts Dorian into a vain, selfish, arrogant, hedonistic, and cruel man. A similar artist to art relation exists between Mr. Bytes and John Merrick in the Elephant Man. Mr. Bytes runs a carnival freak show and displays John as the Elephant Man. His major deformities attract business. Mr. Bytes changes John by making him feel as though he was a less than human monster and by causing the world to view him as such.
John was found and claimed by Mr. Bytes when he was a boy. For his entire life, John has been displayed as a freak by his owner, Mr. Bytes. Just as animals are owned by humans, so is John by Mr. Bytes. This dehumanization of John continues as he is constantly displayed as an animal. As a result of this is, John no longer believes himself a human, but rather an animal. This is clearly seen when Mr. Treves purchases John, again as an animal, from Mr. Bytes. When John is asked to talk, Mr. Bytes answers that he cannot, and later when John is asked by Mr. Treves to talk, privately, he responds, “I am not supposed to talk.” John does not say that he does not speak well, or that he does not know how, but that he is not supposed to talk, because animals do not talk. Even if he is saying that Mr. Bytes does not want him to talk, he has caused John to believe that he should not talk either. Mr. Bytes has convinced John, by years of dehumanization, to believe that he is a monster. He is the artist who makes John think that he is an animal.
When the reader first meets Dorian, it is only through a story told by Basil. Basil’s story reveals little, if anything, about Dorian. Similarly, when Lady Brandon describes Dorian, nothing is revealed about him.
How to Cite this Page
"A Comparison of Dorian Gray and The Elephant Man." 123HelpMe.com. 20 Oct 2019
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- The French born author, Anais Nin once wrote, “We do not grow absolutely, chronologically. We grow sometimes in one dimension, and not in another; unevenly. We grow partially. We are relative” ("Think Exist Quotations"). Anais is expounding upon the inconsistency all people have in aspects of their personalities. Some days a person may be hailed as a saint for their actions, while other days they seem absolutely evil. In most literature, characters are defined as good or evil based on their revealed thoughts and actions.... [tags: The Picture of Dorian Gray]
2031 words (5.8 pages)
- The beauty of a portrait, the adventure of a saga, the delicacy of a porcelain vase, the emotion of a symphony – all forms of art, all forms of expression. Art, as Oscar Wilde explains it, is the “most intense mode of individualism that the world has ever known” (Wilde, The Soul of a Man Under Socialism). Art allows one to express themselves through a thousand mediums using all five senses. It allows words that are not meant to be spoken, to be expressed, and ideas not meant to be thought, imagined.... [tags: The Picture of Dorian Gray, Oscar Wilde]
1881 words (5.4 pages)
- Oftentimes in life, it seems easier to comply in nefarious acts than to uphold honorable standards. In “Au Lecteur” by Charles Baudelaire and The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde, the authors both convey their disappointment in humanity. By employing the themes of impulse, boredom, and hypocrisy during the Victorian era both Wilde and Baudelaire argue that a yearning desire for wickedness lies in all human beings and once evil becomes habit the only escape from consequence is death. Through the incorporation of symbolism, Baudelaire and Wilde both echo how sin innately drives human impulse.... [tags: The Picture of Dorian Gray, Oscar Wilde, Human]
1301 words (3.7 pages)
- A Comparison of Oscar Wilde and Dorian Gray One novel that stands out as literary masterpiece is The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde. Wilde wrote a dark tale of a man, Dorian Gray, who destroys his life by exchanging his soul for eternal youth and beauty. The character of Dorian Gray, in many aspects, mirrors the self-destruction of the author's own life. Therefore, Oscar Wilde portrays his own life through Dorian Gray, the main character of the novel. Oscar Fingal O' Flahertie Wills Wilde is one of Birtain's most well known authors.... [tags: Wildre Dorain Gray Comparison Essays]
1315 words (3.8 pages)
- The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde and Dorian Gray The novel The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde was written by Robert L. Stevenson and first published in 1886. The years from 1837 to 1901 are considered the Victorian Era, so the novel is considered a Victorian novel. Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde is written in the same era as Dr Jekyll and is a Victorian Novel as well. Having read the extracts of the novels and knowing what happens in the end, a comparison of the Victorian Era and the novels can easily be made.... [tags: Victorian Compare Contrast Hyde Dorian Gray Jekyll]
912 words (2.6 pages)
- Contemporary Ancient Myth in Ovid’s Echo and Narcissus and Wilde’s Dorian Gray Each time a story is told, elements of the original are often changed to suit new situations and current societies, or to offer a new perspective. Over the centuries, Ovid’s tale of "Echo and Narcissus" has been told many times to new audiences, and in the late nineteenth-century, it took the form of The Picture of Dorian Gray. "Echo and Narcissus" is the tale of a beautiful boy who fell in love with his reflection in a pond, and spurned others who loved him because he was so fixated upon himself.... [tags: comparison compare contrast essays]
3138 words (9 pages)
- Mr. Hyde and Dorian Gray are characters that nearly match each other in their symbolism and manner. However, it is the key differences that make them remarkably interesting as a pair. They symbolize the battles between good and evil, though they have differing interpretations of morality. Mr. Hyde is the monstrous side of Dr. Jekyll from their book “The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.” In their story, Dr. Jekyll is a brilliant scientist who has created a formula that turns him into Mr.... [tags: scientists, dorian, symbolism]
901 words (2.6 pages)
- “There were passions in him that would find their terrible outlet, dreams that would make the shadow of the real evil” (Wilde,115). The author reveals pleasure as the driving force of many characters within Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray, but this search for pleasure becomes fatal once taken into the hands of Dorian Gray. Throughout the novel Dorian Gray changes his opinion on pleasure based on what he requires in order to escape reality. With each death and misdeed he is responsible for; Dorian must search harder for a more drastic form of release.... [tags: The Picture of Dorian Gray 2016]
2300 words (6.6 pages)
- What good does it do a man to gain the whole world yet forfiet his soul. None, perfection, the goal we all reach for, yet is it really attainable to become perfect without giving something in return, possibly your soul. This is a theme challenged in the novel The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde. We see the tragedy of a young beautiful Englishman, Dorian Gray, who becomes a vain sinner dedicated to pleasure. Dorian's inner secrets and weakness of mind becomes his downfall. In this novel Dorian Gray's apparent perfection is destroyed by his weakness of mind and naiiveness, which becomes the downfall of his soul as his mind is opened to sin and Hedonism by Lord Henry Wotton.... [tags: The Picture of Dorian Gray]
535 words (1.5 pages)
- A Portrait of Dorian Gray “He began to wonder whether we could ever make psychology so absolute a science that each little spring of life would be revealed to us”. Lord Henry spent many days merely philosophizing about the power of the mind and how it could be manipulated. Exercising his abilities of control and influence was what Harry lived for, and when Dorian uttered the fateful phrase wishing to trade places with the portrait, he was not striking a bargain with the Lord of Darkness, but rather one of his rogues.... [tags: A Portrait of Dorian Gray]
756 words (2.2 pages)
Mr. Bytes does not only convince John that he is an animal, but the world too. At first, John’s show is closed because the crowd could not handle John’s ugliness. At this point John is sub-human. Although the world begins to realize that John is human while in the care of Mr. Treves, when Mr. Bytes steals John back and returns him to the freak show, he again creates him into a monster. The world views John as a monster again and still persecutes him for his ugliness. Their prejudice has not changed. In the subway, John bumps into a little girl and she cries. A crowd builds and chases John down. As they begin to approach, John shouts, “I am not an animal!” Although Mr. Bytes has again brought the ugliness out in John, he has failed this time to dehumanize him. John has learned that he is not an animal. Within a few days, John kills himself.
Dorian continues his life of deception and cruelties. He causes a young woman’s death and even kills Basil. The world how ever still treats him like art. As art is unchanging, the world refuses to see the change in Dorian’s personality and only can view him as beautiful. Lord Henry, by indirectly causing Dorian’s youth, has caused the world to view Dorian as art. This view never changes, because as art, Dorian never changes. Although the world’s view of him does not change, his view of himself does. Dorian has learnt what an animal he has become. He curses himself, and says that he must kill the past, so as he tries to destroy the painting he kills himself.
Lord Henry and Mr. Bytes corrupt their art. Lord Henry pollutes Dorian and causes him to be evil. Mr. Bytes causes John to believe that he is an animal. Lord Henry and Mr. Bytes also both change the way the world views their art. Mr. Bytes focuses on John’s deformities and makes the world view John as an animal. This causes the world to think that John is evil. By convincing Dorian that his youth is everything, Dorian makes a wish to retain his youth forever. Lord Henry has caused Dorian to look beautiful forever. This causes the world to only see Dorian’s beauty and continuously see him as good. Similarly, both Dorian and John conclude what they really are. John understands that what people think and how he looks, mean nothing. What you are is not based on looks or thoughts but on actions. Dorian realizes this very same conclusion. He realizes that he did nothing in his life and enjoyed nothing with his beauty. Dorian hates himself and his beauty. In the end, he knows that he has done wrong and concludes that looks are nothing; actions define who you are.