Essay on Disregarding Women in The Picture of Dorian Gray

1297 Words6 Pages
In the Victorian Era of mid nineteen to early twentieth century, a woman’s role in society remained to be in the household, away from the business and cares of men. The feminine side is portrayed as negative, powerless, and lacking (Kileen 49). Society discouraged women from having power in society and neglecting women represented normal in the eyes of most men and women. However, Victorian novels such as The Picture of Dorian Gray illustrate the consequences of disregarding women. In Oscar Wilde’s only novel, the lack of importance surrounding the female characters and their careless treatment from men results in the selfishness of the male characters exemplified through Dorian Gray’s acts of evil. Dorian Gray inflicts his first and…show more content…
Dorian begins to be concerned only with himself and develops into a selfish person later due to this incident. Furthermore, Lord Henry tells Dorian that her death was merely a theatrical tragedy that is beautiful rather than something to mourn over. He states, “The girl never really lived, and so she has never really died,” (Wilde 107). The act of Sibyl being tossed aside consequently leads to Dorian transforming from an innocent person to a selfish and evil being. Even though Sibyl Vane’s death dismissal does not directly cause the selfishness of Dorian, it allows for the evilness in him to develop. Because Lord Henry tosses Sibyl Vane’s death aside, Dorian progressively turns his focus onto seeking out pleasure and ignoring morals. If Lord Henry had not simply dismissed Sibyl’s suicide, Dorian would have presumably learned from the tragedy and realized the devastation he has caused. Without Lord Henry’s encouragement, Dorian would not have cast aside the cares of others and focus on pursuing pleasures for himself and following hedonism. Thus, the tossing aside of Sibyl by Lord Henry ultimately leads to Dorian’s selfishness. In addition, the author of the novel, Oscar Wilde, proved to believe that women possess reasoning, but they fail to develop it (Kileen 52). Authors most primarily reflect their opinions and ideals in their novels; Wilde no

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