Oscar Wilde – The Picture of Dorian Gray (1891)
(You can skip chapter 11 if you are short on time)
Presentations & Blog posts due: Tuesday, May 21
- Group 6 (Gyeongyeon): Is Basil a good or bad man, and what is his effect on Dorian?
- Group 7: Why Dorian falls into evil (podcast).
Write a post here of two paragraphs (about 200 words) discussing the novel. Choose one topic, or make your post a reply to someone else’s post.For the presentations, choose one topic per group. Your presentation must present an opinion or argument; it cannot just summarize the story. E-mail or speak to me before your presentation to have it approved.
- Can we define Dorian’s nature as either good or evil? Whose fault is it that he becomes corrupt?
- “All art is quite useless.” Do you think this is true? Why does Wilde write this? Does the novel prove or disprove this in any way?
- What impact does Sibyl’s death have on Dorian? Are there places in the novel where Dorian could easily turn away from evil and change?
- The characters in the novel seem selfish. Is it possible that the only person who loves anybody in the novel is James Vane, for his sister Sibyl? Do other people have real love or friendship for others?
- Does Dorian continue to derive actual pleasure from his actions as time goes on? If not, what motivates him?
- Does Dorian actually cause his own downfall, or is it Lord Henry’s fault? Who is the most to blame?
- Does Lord Henry suffer for his actions, or does he get away with what he’s done? Or has he actually done anything wrong?
- Is Dorian Gray an immoral book, or does it have a lesson? Do you agree with early critics who said the book was a bad influence on people?
- Is Dorian sorry for what he’s done at the end?
- Are there other themes or ideas in the novel you think are interesting?