The Picture Of Dorian Gray

1432 Words6 Pages
In The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde, we see how the different characters show their love of beauty and pleasure and the affects they have on the main character: Dorian Gray. Each of the three main characters, Basil Hallward, Lord Henry Wotton, and Dorian Gray portray a part of how the author felt about himself and the world around him. “Basil Hallward is what I think I am: Lord Henry what the world thinks of me: Dorian what I would like to be- in other ages, perhaps” (qtd. in Bloom pg. 117). Through these characters, Wilde shows the ramifications of a worldview based entirely on the pursuit of happiness, beauty and sensuality demonstrated by their integration with the world around them. This is most strongly seen through the life…show more content…
“He has a very bad influence over all his friends, with the single exception of myself” (Wilde, pg. 19). When Dorian falls prey to Lord Henry’s manipulative ways, Basil attempts to bring him back to purity even when nobody else will associate with him. “The prayer of repentance will be answered also. I worshiped you too much. I am punished for it. You worshiped yourself too much. We are both punished” (Wilde, pg. 162).
• He is afraid of life yet in love with finding what he wishes to be in others.
• Basil was to Dorian what Wilde was to Lord Alfred Douglas.
• “He is all my art to me now…” (Wilde, pg. 11).


Lord Henry Wotton poses differing view in his love of beauty. To him, love and happiness should be sought after above all else. “Oscar’s antidote to asceticism, we recall, is New Hedonism. This is most fully developed in The Picture of Dorian Gray, where Lord Henry proposes New Hedonism as a kind of ethical admonition…” (O’Sullivan, pg. 308-309). Hedonism is “The doctrine that pleasure or happiness is the highest good” (The Random House Dictionary of the English Language pg. 657). We see his sensuality most strongly when he makes comments such as “The only way to get rid of a temptation is to yield to it” (Wilde, pg. 21). Lord Henry’s infatuation with love can also be seen through how he talks about the death of Sybil Vane and can only say how much he wishes someone loved him so much they would commit suicide for fear of losing him. With his eloquent

More about The Picture Of Dorian Gray

Get Access