Oscar Wilde
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Introduction
                            "One can survive everything, nowadays, except death, and live down everything except a good reputation" - Oscar Wilde
Portrait

New York, 1882. Picture taken by Napoleon Sarony

Biography

Full name: Oscar Fingal O'Flahertie Wills Wilde

Dates: October 16, 1854 -- November 30, 1900

Hometown: Born at 21 Westland Row, Dublin, Ireland.

Family: Sir William Wilde - father; Janet Francesca Elgee Wilde - mother; William Charles Kingbury - brother; Isola Emily Francesca - sister; Constance Lloyd - wife; Cyril Wilde - son; Vyvyan Wilde - son

Education: Home-schooled until age 9; Portora Royal School at Enniskillen, where he excelled at the classics and drawing. Received Royal School Scholarship to attend Trinity College in1871. Received the Foundation Scholarship, the highest honor awarded to an undergraduate at the college, in 1872 for placing first in his classics examinations. Won Berkeley Gold Medal for Greek and Demyship Scholarship to Magdalen College in Oxford, England. Oscar's performance at Oxford was less praise-worthy than at his previous institution. Began to run in a crowd that lauded frivolity over study, and this took a toll on his work at the offset of his time here. The environment of Oxford allowed his flamboyant personality to flourish. His aesthetic ideals in decoration and outfit garnered attention through the gossip of his peers, and his witty aphorisms gained attention as well. While there is no evidence of engaging in homosexual acts while at Oxford, his writing at the time suggests an increased interest in bisexuality--his poetry begins to feature the rose-lipped, golden-haired men that will later become a model for Dorian Gray. Awarded Newdigate prize for poem "Ravenna" at Oxford.

Published Works: The Picture of Dorian Gray (1890) - novel; "The Decay of Lying" (1889), "The Soul of Man Under Socialism" (1891), "Phrases and Philosophies for the Use of the Young" (1894), "De Profundis" (1905) - articles; "The Canterville Ghost" (1887) - short story; Intentions (1891), Lord Arthur Savile's Crime and Other Stories (1891), The Happy Prince and Other Stories (1888), A House of Pomagranates (1891) - collections; "Ravenna" (1878), "Poems" (1881), "The Sphinx" (1894), "Poems in Prose" (1894), "The Ballad of Reading Gaol" (1898) - Poems; Vera/The Nihilists (1880), The Duchess of Padua (1883), Salome (1893), Lady Windermere's Fan (1892), A Woman of No Importance (1893), An Ideal Husband (1895), The Importance of Being Earnest (1895), La Sainte Courtisane and A Florentine Tragedy Fragmentary (1908) - plays

Death: In 1900, Oscar battled multiple bouts of illness leading up to his death. Increasingly deaf and in almost chronic pain, his last months were filled with thoughts of his impending death, leading him at one point to the city morgue to satisfy his curiosity about where his body would go after he passed. On his deathbed, Oscar requested that he finally be received by the Catholic church, citing that "Catholicism is the only religion to die in." Though there is some controversy, most sources indicate that Wilde died of cerebral meningitis at Hotel d'Alsace in Paris, but other suggestions have been presented on the nature of his death.

Information collected from: The Official Site of Oscar Wilde

This Wiki was compiled at the University of Iowa in the Fall of 2009 by Rebecca McCray, Molly McDonnell, Megan Norman and Kelsey Richards

Resources and Links

Journal Articles

Carroll, Joseph. "Aestheticism, Homoeroticism, and Christian Guilt in The Picture of Dorian Gray." Philosophy and Literature 29.2 (2005): 286-304. Print.

Heath, Kay. "In the Eye of the Beholder: Victorian Age Construction of the Specular Self." Victorian Literature and Culture 34.1 (2006): 27-45. Print.

Gomel, Elana. "Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray, and the (Un) Death of the Author." NARRATIVE 12.1 (2004): 74-92. Print.

Ferguson, Christine. "Decadence as Scientific Fulfillment." Modern Language Association of America 117.3 (2002): 465-78. Print.

Joyce, Simon. "Sexual Politics and the Aesthetics of Crime: Oscar Wilde in the Nineties." ELH 69.2 (2002): 501-23. Print.

Outside Resources

Official Oscar Wilde website with biography, quotes, photos, and literary works:

Official Website

Official website of the 1997 film Wilde

Wilde

A collection of Oscar Wilde's literary works

The Oscar Wilde Collection

Timeline of Oscar Wilde's Life

Wilde Timeline

Additional Sources

Wilde, Oscar. The Picture of Dorian Gray. Ed. Norman Page. Orchard Park: Broadview Ltd., 2005. Print.

Wilde, Oscar. The Picture of Dorian Gray. Ed. Joseph Bristow. New York: Oxford World's Classics, 2006. Print

Fryer, Jonathan. Wilde. London: Haus, 2005. Print.

Gillespie, Michael P. The Picture of Dorian Gray: What the World Thinks Me. New York: Twayne, 1995. Print.

Morley, Sheridan. Oscar Wilde. New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 1976. Print.

More Quotes and Anecdotes

From Oscar Wilde (in various texts):

"The truth is rarely pure and never simple. Modern life would be very tedious if it were either, and modern literature a complete impossibility!"- The Importance of Being Earnest

"Disobedience, in the eyes of any one who has read history, is man's original virtue. It is through disobedience that progress has been made, through disobedience and through rebellion."- The Soul of Man Under Socialism

"Those whom the gods love grow young."- A Few Maxims For the Instruction of the Over-Educated

"All art is immoral."- Intentions

What others have said:

"From the beginning Wilde performed his life and continued to do so even after fate had taken the plot out of his hands." "An Improbable Life," -W.H. Auden : review of The Letters of Oscar Wilde (editor, Rupert Hart-Davis) in The New Yorker, 9 March 1963.

"What has Oscar in common with Art? except that he dines at our tables and picks from our platter the plums for the puddings he peddles in the provinces."- James McNeill Whistler The World, November 1886.

"Reading and re-reading Wilde throughout the years, I notice a fact that people who praise him apparently haven't in the very least: the basic and verifiable fact that Wilde is almost always right."- Jorge Luis Borges, Obras completas, Vol. II, p. 70

Modern Adaptations

Movies:

The Sins of Dorian Gray (1982)

Dorian Gray (2009)

Opera:

Lowell Liebermann The Picture of Dorian Gray, Op.45

Plays:

Gross Indecency - Moises Kaufman

Books:

The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen

Topics for Discussion

Duality: What difference lies between Dorian and his portrait? Is there any difference between the body and the soul?

The portrait gives Dorian the horrible power associated with immortality; he can live a life of frivolity and danger (ie: promiscuous sex, drugs, and murder) without the signs of physical harm or aging. Instead, the portrait holds all of Dorian's sins, both physical and moral. Society sees the young, handsome, and immortal Dorian, one that is admired by all. The real Dorian lies in the painting, hidden away in an attic and out of sight from the real world. Dorian proves successful at keeping his real identity hidden. The ones who know his true identity (Basil, the Soho prostitute, Sybil Vane, and James Vane) wind up dead or silenced by their lack of credibility. Dorian murders Basil once he sets eyes on the painting. The Soho prostitute leads a life of sin and old age in the opium den, a place where only vagrants venture. Furthermore, Sybil Vane commits suicide after witnessing first hand Dorian's cruelty and lack of moral compassion or responsibility. Last, a man accidently shoots James Vane during a hunting excursion with Lord Henry and Dorian, thinking James was instead an animal. The people in Dorian's world seem charmed and even bewitched by his beauty and also appear victims of society's warped view of youth and appearance. One of Dorian's sexual conquests demonstrates adequately this reliance on society's standards of beauty: "He had told her once that he was wicked, and she had laughed at him, and answered that wicked people were always very old and very ugly" (184, Oxford). Victorian beauty aids Dorian in masking the darkness and ugliness of his soul.

Repression: What aspect of his unconscious does Dorian allow to surface? What other parts does he repress? What are the consequences of this choice?

Sigmund Freud proposed that an individual has three different parts of the unconscious psyche. The id is the hedonistic and animalistic half often repressed by the other two aspects of the psyche. The superego is the strict, rule abiding, moralistic facet, the opposite of the id. In between these two opposing forces of the unconscious lies the ego, the rational side that serves as a negotiator between the id and superego. The creation of Dorian's portrait spurs a revelation within Dorian, "A look of joy came into his eyes, as if he had recognized himself for the first time...the sense of his beauty came on him like a revelation. He had never felt it before" (24, Oxford). Dorian's vanity overwhelms his ego, the sweet and rational aspect of his personality that Basil Hallward falls in love with, allowing his id to take over. Once this occurs, Dorian engages in animalistic, unabashed sexual and drug activity as well as murder in which he feels no regard for anyone but himself.

Gender: How is gender dealt with in this novel? Do we see a change at the end?

The ambiguous lines between male and female gender roles in the novel, as seen through the characters interactions with each other, emphasize the influence of Victorian social standards on the sexes. From these social expectations, one can assume the common male role in upperclass society is that of the aesthete: the intellectual, decadent, and worldly socialite.  Dorian Gray, Lord Henry, and Basil Hallward all reinforce these male sterotypes and social expectations by living the life of the upperclass male socialite, including a permanent state of unemployment.  However, lowerclass, working males contrast these stigmas by employing themselves in the labor market, such as James Vane. These men exhibit a more traditional masculine persona through their aggression, distrust of homosexuality, and protection of family or emotional ties. James Vane represents the masculine ideal of protector, which ultimately leads him to his death due to his overtly masculine actions. The female role, then, is that of the domesticate: emotionally-driven and intelligently innocent (or as Dorian claims, "absurdly melodramatic" (76)). Throughout the novel, female characters are viewed at home or in an underclass, labored environment; and men are seen at parties, operas, and other upperclass social situations. Sybil Vane embodies this underclass woman state by reverting to "inappropriate" displays of emotion and employment to make a living. Her reliance on an upperclass marriage overshadows the reality of her situation and she is forced to reckon with abandonment. The difference between lust, love, and infatuation becomes unclear to her and overwhelms her to the point of suicide. At the end of the novel, the differences in gender are unchanged, remaining fairly static to the situation. The best example lies in Dorian's death. In his attempts to abandon the upperclass aesthete role and move toward the lowerclass standard of masculinity, he also becomes overwhelmed and technically commits suicide.

Love: What does Sybil's death represent? Does Dorian truly love her, or only himself?

The first result of one of Dorian's many sins, Sybil's death represents the moral turning point for Dorian's soul as it pertains to the portrait's reflection because it is the first noticeable mark on the portrait "with the touch of cruelty in the mouth" (127, Broadview). It is only after noticing the portrait's transformation that Dorian begins to question his behavior towards Sybil, attempting numerous times to justify his attitude, even claiming she was "shallow and unworthy" (127, Broadview). The possiblity of his cruel actions reflecting back onto the portrait, a wish he had never dreamt of actually coming true, terrifies Dorian into searching for miniture resolvements to make the changes untrue. Yet, readers already know the changes are permanent and continue to grow worse, making Dorian's behavior appear selfish and judgmental. Dorian's selfishness and lack of true love for Sybil more fully emerges in his behavior after learning of her suicide, "She had no right to kill herself. It was selfish of her" (134, Broadview). The irony is bluntly stated, to Dorian, only other people's actions are selfish, his own are not. In his mind, it was not selfish of him to end their engagement simply because she acted poorly out of love for him. A few sentences prior Dorian refers to suddenly being afraid after a mysterious incident, most likely alluding to his portrait's change. Even Lord Henry seems confused at Dorian's anguish over his own soul's condition, rather than the condition of Sybil's, calling himself "heartless" (135, Broadview). Dorian's love for Sybil is made to appear selfish and based on appearances, he loved her for she represented the art of his aesthete; but, when she removed herself from the theatric art, he immediately rejects her. These attitudes and reflections increasingly support the notion Dorian's love was only for himself, not for poor Sybil.

Beauty: How do the characters each view beauty and its importance in nineteenth-century society?

The importance of beauty in the novel is apparent immediately. It is in Basil Hallward’s studio that we first meet the infamous portrait “of a young man of extraordinary personal beauty” (43). Dorian is repeatedly described in terms of this beauty and praised for it, emphasizing the value placed on beauty in the world of the novel and in nineteenth-century society. Lord Henry in particular is taken with his beauty, and discusses it so extensively with Dorian that it is eventually detrimental. To Lord Henry, beauty (and the youth that accompanies it) is of the utmost importance. He considers it Dorian’s gift, and encourages him to delve into the luxuries that the beautiful can afford while his youth still allows it. Dorian’s fateful wish to preserve his beauty is a clear indicator that he also recognizes the power with which his looks imbue him. When Lord Henry's diatribe about the importance of beauty soaks in Dorian is devastated, proclaiming that he is "jealous of everything whose beauty does not die" (66). The fear of losing his beauty with age is especially evident in this emotional tantrum. Basil’s choice to paint Dorian’s portrait is also suggestive of how beauty was valued in the nineteenth century. In this decision is the suggestion that the best subjects for portraiture were those were the most attractive.

Mortality: How is Dorian's view of sin reflective of his perspective on death and immortality?

As the novel progresses, Dorian is more and more positive that he has found 'eternal youth'. As the portrait grows uglier and more cruel, his physical appearance remains the same. In this, he takes pleasure. Dorian feels he is impervious to death and is immortal, until James Vane appears. Before Vane appears, Dorian has little fears and indulges himself in any sin he sees fit. Once James threatens to kill him, Dorian realizes that while his youth may be eternal, his life is not. Once his sin is too much to bare and Dorian no longer delights in the contrast between the portrait and himself, he stabs the portrait (in an attempt to kill the ugliness of his sin) and instead, kills himself. It is only when the magnitude of his sin becomes apparent to him and he seeks to destroy it (the portrait) does Dorian's youth, body, and soul perish.

Morality: How do each of the main characters incorporate the intrigue of morality in their lives?

To Lord Henry, a life of morality is entirely without intrigue. His over the top character is centered largely around this attitude, and it is this attitude that so influences the initially moral character of Dorian. Of the nineteenth century, Lord Henry proclaims: “It is so somber, so depressing. Sin is the only real colour-element left in modern life” (68). To him, a life of morality is flat and color-less. To play by the rules is to live life without really living it. Lord Henry is devoted to a self-indulgent lifestyle that values pleasure over morality. This world-view is quickly adopted by the naïve Dorian. Initially Lord Henry’s immoral suggestions shock him, but he quickly succumbs to a life of leisure and indulgence. Basil watches this fall to immorality with horror.

Truth: According to the novel, what truth is the best truth?

The element of deception is very important in the novel, and thus, the element of truth is as well. Manipulated by Lord Henry, Dorian comes to believe that the only truth that exists is that in beauty. Unfortunately, for Dorian, his beauty is only skin deep as it does not penetrate into his soul. Dorian thrives on his physical beauty instead of an inner one, which causes his death. The best truth is within the beauty of the soul, instead of physical appearance. Another important lesson that can be learned in the novel is that of being truthful to others. Dorian is deceitful, as is Lord Henry, and because of this, he betrays his friends and loses their trust. Basil, on the other hand, represents the truth of art. The portrait of Dorian is truthful to Dorian's soul because Basil captured Dorian's physicality and his inner soul. He is the most truthful of artists, and because of this, Dorian kills him (as Dorian represents deception).

Form is Content

"But beauty, real beauty, ends where an intellectual expression begins. Intellect is in itself a mode of exaggeration, and destroys the harmony of any face" (6, Oxford)

This quotation from Lord Henry emphasizes his belief in the power of beauty, suggesting that beauty surpasses intellect in its importance. The “harmony of any face” is thought by Lord Henry to be in some ways contingent on its refusal to enter into intellectual discourse. Describing intellect as “a mode of exaggeration” proposes that there is something dishonest about displaying one’s intelligence. Making statements such as this to Dorian is another way in which Lord Henry exerts control over him---devaluing his intellect encourages him not to use it, which makes Dorian more malleable to Lord Henry’s will. Recognizing that beauty and intellect can co-exist also speaks to the subject of duality in the novel. Here, Lord Henry suggests that a person can (and should) choose between them.

"The only way to get rid of a temptation is to yield to it. Resist it, and your soul grows sick with longing for the things it has forbidden to itself, with desire for what its monstrous laws have made monstrous and unlawful" (19, Oxford)

One of Lord Henry’s more infamous aphorisms, this quotation exemplifies his distaste for self-control. Resistance is devalued and identified as the enemy of the soul, the thing that will ultimately make it “sick.” To control one’s desires is to allow something “monstrous” to grow within---unless you accept your temptations and indulge, Lord Henry suggests the repercussions will be horrific. Desire will fester inside your soul and become something grotesque and unmanageable. This is a classic quotation that is representative of Lord Henry’s hedonistic belief system. The irony of his use of the word “monstrous” is that it is this very refusal to resist temptation that makes Dorian monstrous and miserable.

"There is only one thing in the world worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about" (6, Oxford)

Lord Henry's quotation comments on the unique quality of fame and its ability to exist even when shrouded in infamy. "Being talked about", whether or not in a positive or negative fashion, allows for a reputation to exist amongst as many people as possible. Just the mere knowledge of a name builds fame around an individual; in this instance, Lord Henry tells Basil that his portrait of Dorian will catapult him into the highest of society, alongside the people that matter. Oscar Wilde's decadence and own reputation provide a real-life example of Lord Henry's quote. His infamy and reputation gathered many followers as well as haters; regardless, society knew of Oscar Wilde and his achievements.

"There is always something ridiculous about the emotions of people whom one has ceased to love. Sibyl Vane seemed to him to be absurdly melodramatic. Her tears and sobs annoyed him." (76, Oxford)

This quotation marks the ending of Dorian's infatuation with his lover, Sibyl Vane, and the deciding point of her suicide. His morality appears to drastically disappear in light of his immortality and shows the deterioration of his soul. Dorian's lack of empathy or sympathy for Sibyl, a woman who literally hours ago he adored, also mirrors the shallowness of his personality and his idea of love. Just because Sibyl put on a lackluster performance on stage, Dorian stopped loving her; even the justification of the performance as a good deed done out of her utter obsession and adoration for Dorian did not sway his critical judgment. The choice of the words "absurdly melodramatic" also devalues Sibyl as a grown woman and instead, place her on the level of an ignorant child. "Annoying him" rather than gaining sympathy from him also shows how Dorian places himself above all others, even (what he considers prior to be) the love of his life.

"Nowadays people know the price of everything and the value of nothing" (42, Oxford) 

This is a comment on the society of the time. People were and still are so concerned with money and class, but they do not understand what is valuable. For example, art is something that is very valuable and transformative in the novel, but unless one was famous, it often was not said to be valuable. Something as beautiful as art is auctioned off for money. Wilde is commenting on the absurdity of this.

"Dorian Gray never took his gaze off him, but sat like one under a spell, smiles chasing each other over his lips, and wonder growing grave in his darkening eyes" (45, Fine Creative Media)
This quote explains the terribly strong influence Lord Henry has on Dorian since he first meets him. Lord Henry basically bewitches Dorian as the quote describes (like one under a spell) and is constantly using the power he has gained to manipulate Dorian. Dorian is mesmerized with Lord Henry and it is this obsession that ultimately leads to Dorian's downfall. The beginning of the metamorphosis of Dorian is quite evident in this quote as well. His lips are often mentioned througout the novel, and here there are "smiles chasing" upon them. However, as the portrait begins to morph, one of the first signs is a touch of cruelty upon his lips. The start of the transformation is also clear in the state of Dorian's eyes. For example, as it is often said that the eyes are the windows to the soul, Dorian's eyes are darkening in this quote as if his soul is being blackened by the influence of Lord Henry.

"Your voice and the voice of Sibyl Vane are two things I shall never forget. When I close my eyes, I hear them, and each of them says something different." (55, Fine Creative Media)

This quote also pertains to transformation as it compares two life changing moments in Dorian's life. For one, Lord Henry used his influence to control Dorian. Once Dorian begins to listen to Lord Henry's opinions, he takes them as his own. On the other hand, Sibyl is the first girl Dorian has ever been in love with. This love would have thrived if it hadn't been for Lord Henry. These voices are two opposing sides. Lord Henry's is one of corruption and Sibyl's is one of purity and innocence. Unfortunately, as she kills herself, Dorian's innocence is dead. This quote pits good against evil. It also shows the conflict that Dorian faces in the beginning of the novel (to submit to vice or to contain himself).

"To a large extent, the lad was his own creation. He had made him premature." (61, Fine Creative Media)

This quote reminds one of the novel Frankenstein. In essence, Lord Henry has shaped Dorian into a younger and more beautiful version of himself. Lord Henry has created a monster. Perhaps, the word 'premature' refers to Dorian's young appearance as Lord Henry does not know why Dorian's physical appearance ceases to alter at this point. Lord Henry takes pride in influencing Dorian, as he believes his opinions are the ultimate truth. This quote also shows the immense power Lord Henry has over Dorian.

"Those finely shaped fingers could never have clutched a knife for sin, nor those smiling lips have cried out on God or goodness." (179, Fine Creative Media)

Here, the lips are described as smiling, just as they were earlier in the text. One can see the veil of deception that Dorian's beauty has created. On the outside, Dorian is beautiful and youthful, though it is not so on the inside. Just as there was the belief at the time that criminals shared certain physical characteristics, likewise, the society thought it inconceivable that Dorian, who looked so beautiful on the outside, could commit a crime. They felt that the outside reflected the inside, which was not so in Dorian's case.

The Trial of Oscar Wilde

Libel Trial

April 3, 1895, marked the beginning of the libel case set by Oscar Wilde and his attorney, Sir Edward Clarke, against John Sholto Douglas, the Marquess of Queensberry. The Marquess' rage was born out of his knowledge of Wilde's lengthy affair with his son, Lord Alfred Douglas, more commonly known as Bosie. A student at the Oxford college of Magdalen, Bosie was introduced to Wilde in 1891 as an avid fan of The Picture of Dorian Gray. Wilde was flattered and immediately took to Bosie, especially admiring his golden hair and pale blue eyes, reminiscent of his novel's main character. Thus began their lengthy affair, during which the Marquess hired several private detectives to collect evidence of Wilde's sexual encounters. Wilde brought charges against Douglas after the Marquess left a card with the phrase "Oscar Wilde posing as a sodomite" at one of Wilde's favorite clubs. The Marquess plead not guilty and affirmed the libel was in fact true and should be published. The court of the Old Bailey found the Marquess of Queensberry not guilty on April 5, 1895.

First Trial

Wilde and his beloved Bosie first faced the 25 counts of gross indecency charged against them on April 26, 1895. At the advice of Wilde's legal team, Bosie fled to France. It is likely that his father, Queensberry, used his power in the court to keep him out of the proceedings as much as possible. Much evidence was produced in court, and witnesses against Wilde ranged from rent boys to chambermaids who cited dirty linens as evidence of "unnatural love." Oscar was finally called to the witness box on April 30th, where evidence from his own writings were brought against him. His poetry, letters to Bosie, and The Picture of Dorian Gray were all used as evidence against him. The jury failed to reach a verdict, and bail was granted, to be paid by Bosie's brother Percy.

Second Trial

The second trial began on May 20th, 1895, and in many ways its happenings paralleled those of the first. Many more rent boys were brought to the stands, but this time Wilde's eloquence was less charming to the court. It has been said that the audience in the courtroom acted more like that in a theatrical performance, booing, laughing, and cheering the whole way through the trials. By the second trial, Wilde's morale was lower and this was obvious in the mood of the courtroom. Sir Alfred Wills, the Judge, is quoted as saying, "That you, Wilde, have been the centre of a circle of extensive corruption of the most hideous kind among young men, it is...impossible to doubt. I shall, under the circumstances, be expected to pass the severest sentence that the law allows." That sentence was two years of imprisonment and hard labor.

Wilde's Writings in Prison

For the first several months of his imprisonment, Wilde barely permitted to write at all. He was rarely allowed to write letters, and the time in which he could write them was brief. After their completion, pens and paper were taken away. This changed when a new prison governor named Major James Nelson was appointed at Reading Gaol, where he was imprisoned. Nelson was younger than his predecessors and had a more modern perspective on imprisonment that focused less on hard work and punishment and more on the humane rehabilitation of prisoners. This perspective lead him to expand Wilde's opportunities to write while incarcerated, during which he wrote his famous memoir "De Profundis," in the form of an epistle to Lord Alfred Douglas. The writing of "De Profundis" proved to be an extremely cathartic experience for Wilde, whose artistic spirit had been dampened an repressed by months spent without a creative outlet. The lengthy letter also took the shape of a kind of confession. Although he does accredit Bosie with much of the blame, "De Profundis" exhibits a remarkable amount of reflection and admission on the part of Wilde.

Gross Indecency: A Play by Moises Kaufman

Kaufman's play, published in 1997 by the author now best known for "The Laramie Project," is a theatrical examination of Wilde's trials. Kaufman translates the trials to theater through a variety of materials, including transcripts of the actual trials, newspapers, letters, and excerpts from Wilde's works.

All information taken from: Famous World Trials: The Trials of Oscar Wilde 1895
and Fryer, Jonathan. Wilde. London: Haus, 2005. Print.

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