Wilde's novel beautifully chronicles the gradual descent of a young man into corruption,
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Rezension bezieht sich auf: The Picture of Dorian Gray (Penguin Classics) (Taschenbuch)
Had to read this piece as an undergrad but never made it past page 60 or so. I admit, my past-me couldn't appreciate literary artistry. A couple of years later I picked it up again and finished it in a few days without any problems, on the contrary, I greatly enjoyed the ride. Wilde's famous novel tells the story of a beautiful, young man who is granted eternal youth and embarks on a dark journey toward self-destruction. Initially, caught in the middle between the bad influence of the hedonistic Lord Henry Wotton and the good role model of the virtuous painter Basil Hallward, Dorian is more and more drawn to the seductitve influence of the former.
The book is written in beautiful prose and nicely captures the luxurious lifestyle of the Victorian aristocracy. I took great pleasure in listening to Henry Wotton's philosophical theories, which were full of funny statements and witty jokes. The Picture of Dorian Gray comments on subjects like vanity and beauty, the nature of art as well as moral and sinful behavior. I also read it as a critique of the upper class, especially when it comes to interferring in the lives of common people, treating them as their playthings, that they have their fun with, until they toss them aside damaged or broken, as soon as they lose interest in them. As the book progresses it gets more and more grim and darker, entering into the realm of gothic fiction.
I am extremely happy to have read this classic novel and I will probably go back to it some time in the future. It has changed my attitude toward aging for the better - I can now age without worries or sorrows, but with peace of mind and dignity :)