Tuesday, October 16, 2012

October 16

“Scandal is gossip made tedious by morality.” … October 16 is the birthdate of Oscar Wilde, epigrammatic Irish author and poet who became London's most popular playwright in the early 1890s. As an Oxford student he espoused the philosophy of aestheticism led by Walter Pater and John Ruskin. He combined his ideas of art’s supremacy with themes of decadence, duplicity and beauty in his only novel, The Picture of Dorian Gray (1890), the Faustian story of a hedonistic young man who came to believe that the only things worth pursuing in life are beauty and sensual fulfillment. Wilde delighted in shocking the ethical sensibilities of the middle class, but he paid dearly for his contempt for the bourgeois beliefs of complacent Victorians that art must teach social education and moral enlightenment.

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