Nineteenth Century Literature

Blog Post, Week 11

“This play, while mocking deeply at the tribal customs of the late Victorians, has, at its heart, a wish to point the human race in the right direction: away from fraud, hypocrisy and such indecent preoccupation with material realities.”

1/ Write whether you agree or disagree with the last paragraph in this blog

I agree with the last paragraph in this blog as the satire used by Oscar Wilde within the play draws our attention to the ridiculousness of Lady Bracknell’s interests and expectations through the use of extensive exaggerations and humour.

Rather than focusing on love and emotion, Lady Bracknell shows us that what is most highly valued is how much money and status one has and whether or not they measure up to society’s standards and expectations.

Lady Bracknell states that “We live, I regret to say, in an age of surfaces“, an extremely ironic comment as she is not only referring to the society around her, but she is also unknowing criticizing herself as she is portrayed to be the worst part of this society that she is criticizing.

When reading this play, we today see the humour and exaggeration throughout as, although our world is still overly materialistic, we value character and love in people over their materials and possessions.

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