“You the Victorian Era. In his life he wrote

“You are perfectly right in making some slight
alteration. Indeed, no woman should ever be quite accurate about her age. Thirty-five
is a very attractive age. London society is full of women of the very highest
birth who have, of their own free choice, remained thirty-five for years.”

-Oscar Wilde

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Oscar
Wilde (1854-1900) was an Anglo-Irish playwright, novelist, poet, and critic. He is thought to be one in all the best playwrights of the Victorian Era. In his life he wrote 9 plays, one novel, and diverse poems,
short stories, and essays. Wilde
was someone of the Aesthetic movement that stressed aesthetic
values over ethical or social themes. This belief is most clearly summarized within the phrase
‘art for art’s sake’. Besides literary
accomplishments, he’s additionally illustrious, or maybe disreputable, for his wit, floridness, and affairs with men. He
was tried and unfree for his homosexual relationship (then thought of a crime)
with the son of a patrician. His famous
works consisted of The Picture of Dorian Gray (1891 Novel), The Importance of Being Earnest (1895
Play), The Ballad of Reading Gaol (1898 Poem). According to Oscar
Wilde ‘Biography lends to death a new terror’. The Importance of Being Earnest, a trivial comedy for serious
people is a play by Oscar Wilde. First performed on 14 February 1895 at the St.
James theatre London, it is a ludicrous comedy within which the
protagonists maintain fictitious persona to flee heavy social
obligations. Operating at intervals the
social conventions currently Victorian London, the play’s major
themes area unit the
triviality with that it
treats establishments as
serious as wedding, and therefore the ensuing satire of Victorian ways. Up to date reviews
all praised the play’s humor, though’ some were cautious concerning its specific lack of
social messages, whereas others foresaw the fashionable agreement that it absolutely was the end result of Wilde’s inventive career to date.

Its high farce and humorous dialogue
have helped build The
Importance of Being Earnest Wilde’s most enduringly widespread play.
The title of the play carries the sense of
caustic remark. The quarrelling for the sole name Earnest makes the play comedy
of manners. Different components like a cigarette case, diary writing, and
personal letter writing even have contributed in creating this play a comedy of
manners. A funny side of this play is its subtitle that assumes a unique quite
significance. Several readers show totally different quite interest to the
subtitle of the play. The
play is meant to consider the queries of identity and
reality. Typically control in associate acclaimed position as a
comedy of manner, The importance of Being
Earnest could be an excellent example of social witticism. To all or any intent and
purpose it absolutely was to enhance the decadent
society. The distinctiveness of
the play is that it’s the
innovative parts within the play. The play inheritable immeasurable parts from comedy and superior play, however his treatment of the topic and his vogue has given a novel bit to the satiric dimension
of the play. The innovative parts square measure noticeable in Wilde’s handling of language within the context of character
portrayal.

Though the
story isn’t extraordinary
and unconventional, nonetheless it’s powerful as a result of these
devices and also the deftness at victimization the words. The Importance of Being Earnest Academy Award Wilde’s vogue is characterized by the
employment of misapplied logic. Contradiction in terms is that the hallmark of Wilde’s vogue. His vogue is usually marked by the employment of contradiction in terms. Contradiction in terms could be a statement that appears contradictory,
unbelievable or absurd. Another facet of
Wilde’s vogue is
recognized because the form of creating associate inverted
parody of the stock romantic state
of affairs within which the
lover’s devotion alone, not their names, as meaning.
If we have a tendency to analyze
the play from the purpose of read of aestheticism, being
the founding father of the
principle art for art’s sake, the writer provides the audiences pleasure
and delight.

            The Importance of
Being Earnest by Oscar Wilde uses witticism to
ridicule the cultural norms of marriage love and mind-set that were terribly rigid throughout the Victorian age. As a result of it uses witticism to
ridicule these institutions, it shows the deviance from the social order by creating ridiculous
the concepts of
standards, morals and manners. By making an attempt to correct the issues of the
characters during this play, this piece conjointly is a good style of criticism.
“The play really owes something to the restoration comic tradition.” Wilde was a master at the art of
turning English language
around to suit his sardonic themes and during this play he accomplished
that to a high level. The title of this piece is even a play-on-word
“Earnest” which might mean two various things. It will mean the plain and be the particular character’s
name, however it can also mean a way of seriousness and he then
conveys that seriousness into reality for the characters. The two main characters within the play, Jack and
Algernon, created each effort to be
“Ernest” and “Earnest” within the play. They
begin their relationship supported the lies within the hope of marrying the ladies that they love. There’s irony within
the play once they each decision themselves “Earnest”, a reputation that means honesty and sincerity, nonetheless they each produce stories to
flee one thing or the opposite. Jack creates a
brother known as “Ernest” within the town that he uses as a
‘scape goat’ to go away his
prim and correct,
respectable country life, whereas Algernon creates a fan by the name of “Bun bury” to flee his aunt’s high category society parties. He
shows his lack of interest in such social events once he tells Jack,

“She will place me next to Mary Farquhar, who always flirts with her own husband across the dinner table. That is not very pleasant it looks so bad. It is simply washing one’s clean linen in public.” (Wilde, 533)

The Importance of
Being Earnest focuses on two main couples,
Jack and Gwendolen and Algernon and Cecily. Each Gwendolen and Cecily yearn to own a husband referred to as “Ernest.”
They each place stress on such a
trivial matter as a reputation. Once Jack tries to inform Gwendolen that his name is actually “Jack”
and not “Ernest” she replies
speech communication, “Jack”… No, there is very little music in the name Jack, if
any at all, indeed.” (Wilde, 537) the only really safe name is Ernest.” Oscar Wilde deliberately
uses farce within the play to exaggerate the mind frame of
the upper crust. It’s seen
here that Gwendolen loves Jack, however she places larger importance on
silly, superficial and trivial matters like a reputation, one thing someone has no management over.
Similarly, Cecily conjointly dreams of adoring somebody referred to as “Ernest.”
She clearly states to Algernon, “There is something in that name that seems to inspire absolute confidence. I pity
any poor married woman whose
husband is not referred to as Ernest.”(Wilde,
556). Again, Wilde is satirizing the establishment of marriage, because it isn’t supported love, however on additional vain
superficial criteria. though during this case there’s exaggeration wont to jest at the self-importance of the aristocrats, Wilde still brings
across the purpose that each Gwendolen and
Cecily might have refused
to marry the ‘men of their dreams’ if their names weren’t ‘Ernest.’

In
Act 3 of the
play once Cecily asks
Algy if he would wait till she
was cardinal years to
be married albeit Algy
says yes, Cecily roundly tells him she cannot.
.”..I couldn’t wait all the time. I hate waiting even five minutes for anybody. It
makes me rather
cross.” One would suppose that when dreaming such a lot of the person she claims to like, waiting to be married are going to be a tiny low favor to raise. In fact, Oscar Wild uses another couple, Miss
Prism and mister. Vestment as a foil to point out the distinction between a relationship engineered on love and one engineered on alternative materialistic,
shallow values. Miss Prism looks to
be the sole lady UN agency does not have AN ulterior motive within the play once involves wedding and love. Even
Algernon looks to own ulterior motives. He
has ne’er met Cecily
before, nevertheless once he sees her, he instantly
falls enamored along with her. What is more, his negative views
on marriage within the gap scene, wherever he refers to that as ‘demoralizing,’ appear to suddenly amendment once he meets Cecily. It may be inferred that Algernon’s bankruptcy influences his
attraction to Cecily. Each Jack
and Algernon square measure determined to induce themselves
christened so as to carry on to Gwendolen and
Cecily. That conjointly shows
some level of self-importance within the men as they’re not even slightly flustered that the ladies place such a lot stress on their names. These
couples appear to
be carrying masks
as all of them seem a method, however appear to own some ulterior motives behind their actions. Gwendolen
and Cecily each seem as women once they initial meet, job one another sisters, “My first impressions of people are never wrong.” nevertheless once they believe that they are engaged to an equivalent “Ernest,” there’s immediate coldness
between them. Gwendolen satirically says to Cecily, “I am glad to say that I have never seen a spade. It is obvious that our social spheres have been widely different.”
this can be known as ‘dissembling’ because the characters are not virtually carrying masks, howevermetaphorically they’re all deception to be somebody they are not. There’s the
division between truth and identity and it shows that typically bound laws in society force individuals to guide double
lives.

Lady Bracknell is that the actuation behind the plot of The Importance of Being Earnest. She
represents women of
the Victorian upper class society and believes that those of high
class ought to be those in power. She has little or no opinion of these with no title, or cash and views the social class society as being a
‘closed club.’ In alternative words, the general public do not need to be in it unless they were born into it. She seems as a guardian of
society therein she
forcefully dictates who ought to marry who within the play. Within the initial scene, Gwendolen is
unable to defend herself from eager
to marry Jack once he
proposes to her. Lady Bracknell
firmly steps in speech
communication, “Pardon me, you are not engaged to anyone. When you do become engaged to someone, I, or your
father, will inform
you.” Lady Bracknell
is delineate as a
forceful character Who
leaves no space for
opposition. Despite the fact that Gwendolen needs to oppose her, she hasn’t
the strength to try and do thus. Wilde uses Lady Bracknell to indicate a typical leader Who bends no rules of the social class society. One example wherever he shows however values are inverted and stress is placed on additional trivial matters is that the scene wherever Lady Bracknell meets with Jack to debate Gwendolen. During this scene we have a tendency to see that in position of asking Jack if he
loves Gwendolen (which would
appear to be the foremost necessary question); Lady Bracknell focuses on the
materialistic facet of
it. She queries Jack concerning his cash, land, house and also the space within which he lives. She makes it clear that it is important for Jack to possess a house within the city as a result of Gwendolen cannot board a rustic house. It’s conjointly seen here that Lady Bracknell treats the trivial things seriously, despite the fact that she’s imagined to be a champion of the values of
society. However, very little attention
is paid to ethical values.
Instead, Lady Bracknell
is pissed with the facet of that Jack’s row house is located- the frumpish facet. She thinks that everyone’s interest are the same as hers
and subtly tells him, “The unfashionable side. I thought there was something. However that could easily be altered.” the complete approach within which Lady Bracknell
meets with Jack is as if she
is of a superior being than him. She takes down his answers to her queries in a very pad, as if it’s an interview instead of a private meeting together with her daughter’s
love. The setting of the meeting reflects however Lady Bracknell
views wedding. It’s additional like
interviewing somebody for the work of being Gwendolen’s
husband instead of about to recognize the person her girl is fascinated by. Upon the shock that
Jack was found and he does not
recognize who his
real oldsters are, Lady Bracknell instantly dismisses
him, particularly once she
finds out that he was found in a
very purse. The
farce continues once she
tells Jack, I would strongly advise you, Mr. Worthing, to try
and acquire some relations as soon as possible, and make a definite effort to
produce at any rate one parent, of either sex, before the season is quite over. This is a very not possible request
of Lady Bracknell, because it is clear that Jack has no information concerning his real oldsters. Though he is aware of that he urgently desires to marry Gwendolen, he does not hide his feeling upon Lady Bracknell’s request, “Well I don’t see how I could possibly manage to do that. I can produce the hand-bag at any moment.” This merely highlights however trivial the vital things area unit to girl Bracknell and the way vital the trivial things area unit to her. This can be a serious purpose Oscar Wilde focuses on during this comedy
of manners- values are completely reversed.

            Another example of Lady Bracknell’s content of the non-aristocrats is
seen wherever she is prepared to show a blind eye to
Cecily, once she hears
that Algernon is engaged to her. She like a shot judges Cecily supported the actual
fact that Jack is her guardian. However, her views instantly modification once Jack tells her that Cecily contains a hundred and thirty
thousand pounds in funds, “A hundred and thirty thousand pounds! Miss
Cardew seems to me a most attractive young
Lady, now that
I look at her.” yet again stress is placed on an individual’s wealth instead of their personality, sincerity, or compassion
for the opposite. Wedding is viewed as associate degree economic issue, whereby folks marry for wealth or to
conserve wealth in their families, particularly Lady Bracknell United Nations agency represents
the guardian of associate degree
social class society. She is but a deceiver and
uses social morals to her convenience. For instance, she refuses to let Jack marry Gwendolen attributable to his social
background, nonetheless she
tries to justify a poor Algernon
marrying the rich Cecily.
Her social hypocrisy is highlighted once she additionally confesses
that she wasn’t made once she married her
husband. “Never speak disrespectfully of Society, Algernon. Only people who can’t get
into it do that. When I married to Lord Bracknell
I had no fortune of any kind.” She moreover thinks that her standing offers her the correct to approve of the wedding between Cecily and Algernon while not asking Jack what he
thinks. Eventually, either side return to associate degree agreement and
Jack’s name seems to essentially be Ernest or he is really Lady Bracknell’s kinsman. Author offers the everyday happy ending wherever everybody lives happily ever once and therefore the stern mask that Lady Bracknell wears slowly turns
into a smile

            In
conclusion, The Importance of Being Earnest powerfully focuses on those of the upper class society and therefore the vainness of the aristocrats UN agency place stress on trivial
matters regarding marriage. Each Algernon and
Jack assume the identity of “Ernest” nevertheless ironically,
they both are starting their marital lives supported deception
and lies. Lady Bracknell
represents the prototypic patrician UN agency forces the conception of a marriage supported wealth
or standing instead of love. Through farce and exaggeration, Oscar Wilde satirically
reveals the foolish and trivial matters that the class society appearance upon as
being vital. As same earlier,
a satirical piece typically incorporates a didactical aspect thereto. During this case, Lady Bracknell
learns that constant person she was criticizing is truly her own
flesh and blood.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

References

Books

Barnet,
Sylvan. “Introduction.
The Importance of Being Earnest and alternative Plays by Oscar Fingal O’Flahertie Wills Wilde”. New York: Seabird Books, 1985.

Christopher, Nassaar. “Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest.”, Woodfield
publishing 2005, 78-80. Web

David, Parker. “Oscar
Wilde’s Great Farce: The Importance of Being Earnest.” Modern Language
Quarterly 35 (1974). Pdf

Foster, Richard. “Wilde
as Parodist: A Second Look at the Importance of Being Earnest.”
College English (1956): 18-23. Jstor.

Raby,
Peter. “The Importance of Being Earnest: A
Reader’s Companion”.
New York: Twayne Publishers, 1995. Print 

Wilde, Oscar, “The importance of being earnest, and other plays”. London: Penguin Books. (1986). pdf

 

Wilde, Oscar, “The
Importance of Being Earnest.” Dover publications Inc.2006.Print.

Wilde, Oscar, and Samuel Lyndon Gladden. “The Importance of Being
Earnest: A Trivial Comedy for Serious People”. Peterborough, Ont.: Broadview Press, 2010.

Journals

Lalonde,
Jeremy. “A Revolutionary Outrage: The
Importance of Being Earnest as Social Criticism” Modern
Drama. 48:4 (2005)

Shepherd, A. “History in Focus: Overview of The Victorian Era” (article) (2001). 

(http://www.history.ac.uk/ihr/Focus/Victorians/article.html)

 

Website

http:// www.123helpme.com/view

http://www.bachelorandmaster.com/globaldrama/satire-in-importance-of-being-earnest.html

http://www.ukessays.com/essays/english-literature/ satire