The Picture of Dorian Gray

Reply Mon 14 Aug, 2017 10:00 am
I am currently in the middle of writing an essay on Wilde's novel. The focus of my debate is on whether or not we are able to really label Gray as the "epitome of mankind's obsession with youth". The novel certainly deals with themes like morality, youth and beauty but is Gray's obsession with youth really a perfect example of mankind's obsession? Is mankind even really obsessed after looking at the way Wilde portrays Dorian Gray?

I'd love to hear your thoughts or even other ideas you have about the novel or maybe even the context or other topics you find interesting that are related to this.

Thank you!!
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Reply Mon 14 Aug, 2017 03:55 pm
If you're unsure about mankind being obsessed with youth, you need to get out more. Plastic surgeons, cosmetic and hair dye companies are quite profitable with people searching for ways to appear younger.
Reply Mon 14 Aug, 2017 04:25 pm
I was interested in the Dorian Gray story but by now I've forgotten the details and don't care.

I agree with Sturgis but would add the word 'some of' before 'mankind'.

Could be that one has to age to get that age has it's interests and benefits.
Reply Tue 15 Aug, 2017 08:16 am
I appreciate you taking the time to share your ideas on my question, thank you. I can definitely agree that, even today, we are constantly focused on youth and you are correct; companies are finding ways to make a profit from this.

However, my main line of argument here is simply to do with whether the obsession Gray shows can be likened to man's obsession today. In the novel, we see Gray turn to murder and corruption which can perhaps be described as a far more exaggerated obsession than the one we see in everyday life.

Another point I would welcome any input on (if it is of interest to you), is whether or not Dorian Gray is obsessed with a lot more than just youth. Perhaps it is about what youth represents? Is this something that applies to man today? Are we solely focused on just looking youthful or does it mean more?

Once again, thank you for your feedback!
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Reply Tue 15 Aug, 2017 08:22 am
For my project to meet its rather strict guidelines, I'm worried that 'some of mankind' may be perhaps too unclear or unsubstantiated as a part of my thesis statement. However, I think the idea of Dorian Gray epitomising 'some of us' rather than all of us will form an interesting line of argument against my thesis.

Thank you very much for taking the time to respond!
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