Reading The Picture of Dorian Gray

After being exposed to the infinite literary horrors of The Scarlet Letter, I needed to recover from its wrath and read something more to my liking.  I chose The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscars Wilde. It was refreshing to immerse myself in book where I didn’t have to search through a heaping pile of symbolism to get the meaning. With this book, Dorian’s youth is simply Dorian’s youth and Sybil Vane’s death is her death. Wilde paints a aesthetic picture of the life of Dorian Gray. I find it quite relatable compared to other American authors’ works. It’s very much worth my spare time so far.

I appreciate how Wilde includes so many dramatic elements that actually contain human truths. Of course the idea of Sybil Vane killing herself over a young man she met just days ago is absurd. But the idea of a strong unconditional love is not.

The change in the character of Dorian Gray is also astounding. He has gone from an enchanting young man who has an eye for beauty to a secretive and irrational person. This change in Dorian, I think, is the most emphasized. Though his picture will never change, Dorian himself can take on a completely different personality.


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