Read The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde Online

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A young man of rare beauty, Dorian Gray is the very picture of the ideal British gentleman. When he is drawn into a life of decadence and lustful indulgence, he discovers a painting begins to bear new marks for each of his sins, leaving him as youthful and attractive as ever. And so begins Dorian's descent into a personal hell of lies, murder, and depravity....

Title : The Picture of Dorian Gray
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9781557424297
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 187 Pages
Status : Available For Download
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The Picture of Dorian Gray Reviews

  • Stephen
    2018-09-18 01:58

    Arguably literature's greatest study of shallowness, vanity, casual cruelty and hedonistic selfishness, Wilde lays it down here with ABSOLUTE PERFECTION!! This was my first experience in reading Oscar Wilde and the man’s gift for prose and dialogue is magical. This story read somewhat like a dark, corrupted Jane Austen in that the writing was snappy and pleasant on the ear, but the feeling it left you with was one of hopelessness and despair. The level of cynicism and societal disregard that Wilde’s characters display towards humanity is simply staggering. Despite the dark (or more likely because of it) this is one of the most engaging, compelling and lyrical pieces of literature I have read. The quality of the prose is nothing short masterful. I assume most people know the basic outline of the plot, but I will give you a few sentences on it. The three main characters are Basil Hallward, Lord Henry Wotton and Dorian Gray. Basil Hallward is an artist who after painting a picture of Dorian Gray becomes obsessed with him because of his beauty (the homosexual vs. art object love Basil feels towards Dorian are left vague, likely because of the time it was written). Dorian then meets a friend Basil’s, Lord Henry, and becomes enthralled with Lord Henry’s world view, which is a form of extreme hedonism that posits the only worthwhile life is one spent pursuing beauty and satisfaction for the senses.The only way to get rid of a temptation is to yield to it. Resist it, and your soul grows sick with longing for the things it has forbidden to itself, with desire for what its monstrous laws have made monstrous and unlawful. Well at one point, Dorian utters the famous words quoted at the beginning of my review and the “Faustian” bargain is struck.While this story is often mentioned among the classics of the Horror genre (which I do have a problem with) this is much more a study of the human monster than it is some boogeyman. My favorite parts of the story were the extensive dialogues between the characters, usually Dorian and Lord Henry. They were wonderfully perverse and display a level of casual cruelty and vileness towards humanity that make it hard to breathe while reading. Oh, and Lord Henry reserves particular offense for the female of the species, to wit: My dear boy, no woman is a genius. Women are a decorative sex. They never have anything to say, but they say it charmingly. Women represent the triumph of matter over mind, just as men represent the triumph of mind over morals.. YES folks...he absolutely did. One of the most intriguing quotes I have seen from Oscar Wilde regarding this book is his comparison of himself to the three main characters. He said that he wrote the three main characters as reflections of himself. Wilde said, “Basil Hallward is what I think I am: Lord Henry is what the world thinks me: Dorian is what I would like to be—in other ages, perhaps.”I was somewhat floored by this as I found Dorian to be a truly stark representation of evil and could not see how Wilde could find an idealized form within the character. When I say evil, I don't mean just misguided or weak-minded, someone bamboozled by the clever lectures of Lord Henry. I found Gray to be selfish, vain, inhumanly callous and sadistically cruel. I intend to try and learn more about Wilde’s outlook on this character as it truly escapes me.Regardless, this is a towering piece of literature. Beautifully written and filled with memorable characters and a deeply moving story. A novel deserving of its status as a classic of English Literature. 5.0 stars. HIGHEST POSSIBLE RECOMMENDATION!!!!P.S. For of audiobooks. I listened to the audio version of this read by Michael Page who has become one of my favorite narrators. His performance here was amazing.

  • Paula
    2018-09-26 23:51

    This book reminded me why I hate classics.Like Frankenstein, it starts out with a great premise: what if a portrait bore the brunt of age and sin, while the person remained in the flush of youth? How would that person feel as they watched a constant reminder of their true nature develop? And like Frankenstein, it gets completely bogged down in uninteresting details and takes forever to get to the interesting bits. Seriously, in a 230-page novel, the portrait doesn't even start to change until 100 pages in. And it's so damn flowery. Every time Lord Harry starts talking (and believe me, he likes to talk) he's so witty. Witty witty witty. Ahahaha, you're soooooooo worldly wise and charming. And entirely cynical! You just have a quip for everything, don't you? Look, reader, look. See Harry. See Harry corrupt Dorian. Corrupt, Harry, corrupt! I actually ended up skimming most of the book. I really thought about stopping, but I hoped it would redeem itself by the end. It didn't. I should have just skipped to the last page. So to save you, dear reader, the same pain I went through, is the summary of Dorian Gray (spoilers, of course):Dorian semi-consciously makes Faustian bargain to transfer all his sins and signs of age to his portrait. He sins and feels guilty about it, but keeps doing it anyway. He finally decides to get ride of the portrait/evidence and stabs the painting. Surprise, it breaks the spell, and he is left ugly, old and dead while his portrait returns to its original form. The end. You can thank me later. UPDATE 9/3/12: Since this review is still around and kicking four years later, I thought I might point like-minded individuals to a new parody of classic literature to the tune of Call Me Maybe: Call Me Ishmael!

  • Scoobs
    2018-09-25 04:44

    Oh Dorian. Oh Dorian.When I first read this book in the fruitless years of my youth I was excited, overwhelmed and a blank slate (as Dorian is, upon his first encounter with Lord Henry) easily molded, persuaded, influenced, etc.Certain Wildisms (Wildeisms?) would take my breath away. Would become my mottos to believe in. To follow. To live.Lines like:"It is silly of you, for there is only one thing in the world worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about.""But beauty, real beauty, ends where an intellectual expression begins. Intellect is in itself a mode of exaggeration, and destroys the harmony of any face.""If they know nothing of victory, they are at least spared the knowledge of defeat.""Genius lasts longer than Beauty. That accounts for the fact that we all take such pains to over-educate ourselves. In the wild struggle for existence, we want to have something that endures, and so we fill our minds with rubbish and facts, in the silly hope of keeping our place.""You know more than you think you know, just as you know less than you want to know."Re-reading this masterpiece and coming upon these highlighted lines was possibly more interesting than the book this time. Why had I highlighted these lines? Do they still mean the same thing to me, as they did when I first took note of them, enough to highlight them? I still love all of those lines. But no longer feel so strongly for them.Now these are lines that stick out still to me. Or were newly underlined on the second pass through. New Wildisms to mold me."Oh, I can't explain. When I like people immensely I never tell their names to any one. It is like surrendering a part of them. I have grown to love secrecy. It seems to be the one thing that can make modern life mysterious or marvelous to us. The commonest thing is delightful if one only hides it. When I leave town now I never tell my people where I am going. If I did, I would lose all my pleasure. It is a silly habit, I dare say, but somehow it seems to bring a great deal of romance into one's life. I suppose you think me awfully foolish about it?""Yes; she is a peacock in everything but beauty.""Laughter is not at all a bad beginning for a friendship, and it is far the best ending for one.""I choose my friends for their good looks, my acquaintances for their good characters, and my enemies for their good intellects.""Ah! this Morning! You have lived since then.""what brings you out so early? I thought you dandies never got up till two, and were not visible till five." --A new personal favorite. That I follow very seriously."She behaves as if she was beautiful. Most American women do. It is the secret of their charm."'He thought for a moment. "Can you remember any great error that you committed in your early days, Duchess?" he asked, looking at her across the table. "A great many, I fear," she cried."Then commit them over again," he said, gravely. "To get back one's youth one has merely to repeat one's follies.""A delightful theory!" she exclaimed. " I must put it into practice.""Besides, each time that one loves is the only time one has ever loved. Difference of object does not alter singleness of passion."It turns out that all of these quotes occur in the first 45 pages, except that last one which is right near the end. And it seems most of my reviews end up being mostly quotes from the book itself, but I figure this is what shaped and informed my reading, so I want to share it with all of you. What do you think of it all?That said, poor Sybil Vane! Poor James Vane! Poor Basil Hallward! Shit, even poor old Lord Henry Wotton! And Dorian! Oh Dorian! Lead the life you did and for what? That's all I am going to say about the book. I don't think I shall read Against Nature, for fear of being seduced like Dorian.If you're tired of this review or just tired in general, stop now and come back later. I am going to include two more quotes from the book that truly fucked me up. So much I had to read them at least 3 times in a row. And then transcribe them here for you. The last section, thats the one that did it. Beautiful.Here goes:"There is no such thing as a good influence, Mr. Gray. All influence is immoral-immoral from the scientific point of view.""Why?""Because to influence a person is to give him one's own soul. He does not think his natural thoughts, or burn with his natural passions. His virtues are not real to him. His sins, if there are such things as sins, are borrowed. He becomes an echo of some one else's music, an actor of a part that has not been written for him. The aim of life is self-development. To realize one's nature perfectly-that is what each of us is here for. People are afraid of themselves nowadays. They have forgotten the highest of all duties, the duty that one owes to one's self. Of course they are charitable. They feed the hungry and cloth the beggar. But their own souls starve, and are naked. Courage has gone out of our race. Perhaps we never really had it. The terror of society, which is the basis of morals; the terror of God, which is the secret of religion-these are the two things that govern us. And yet-""And yet," continues Lord Henry, in his low, musical voice,"I believe that if one man were to live out his life fully and completely, were to give form to every feeling, expression to every thought, reality to every dream-I believe that the world would gain such a fresh impulse of joy that we would forget all the maladies of mediaevalism, and return to the Hellenic ideal-to something finer, richer than the Hellenic ideal, it may be. But the bravest man among us is afraid of himself. The mutilation of the savage has its tragic survival in the self-denial that mars our lives. We are punished for our refusals. Every impulse that we strive to strangle broods in the mind and poisons us. The body sins once, and has done with its sins, for action is a mode of purification. Nothing remains then but the recollection of a pleasure, or the luxury of a regret. The only way to get rid of a temptation is to yield to it. Resist it, and your soul grows sick with longing for the things it has forbidden to itself, with desire for what its monstrous laws have made monstrous and unlawful. It has been said that the great events of the world take place in the brain. It is in the brain, and the brain only, that the great sins of the world take place also. You, Mr. Gray, you yourself, with your rose-red youth and your rose-white boyhood, you have had passions that have made you afraid, thoughts that have filled you with terror, day-dreams and sleeping dreams whose mere memory might stain your cheek with shame-""Stop!" faltered Dorian Gray, "stop! you bewilder me. I don't know what to say. There is some answer to you, but I cannot find it. Don't speak. Let me think, or, rather, let me try not to think."Whew.And:"There are few of us who have not sometimes wakened before dawn, either after one of those dreamless nights that make us almost enamored of death, or one of those nights of horror and misshapen joy, when through the chambers of the brain sweep phantoms more terrible than reality itself, and instinct with that vivid life that lurks in all grotesques, and that lends to Gothic art its enduring vitality, this art being, one might fancy, especially the art of those who minds have been troubled with the malady of reverie. Gradually white fingers creep through the curtains, and they appear to tremble. In black, fantastic shapes, dumb shadows crawl into the corners of the room, and crouch there. Outside, there is the stirring of the birds among the leaves, or the sound of men going forth to their work, or the sigh and sob of the wind coming down from the hills and wandering round the silent house, as though it feared to wake the sleeper, and yet must needs call forth Sleep from her purple cave. Veil after veil of thin, dusky gauze is lifted, and by degrees the forms and colors of things are restored to them, and we watch the dawn remaking the world in its antique pattern. The wan mirrors get back their mimic life. The flameless tapers stand where we had left them, and beside them lies the half-cut book that we had been studying, or the wired flower that we had worn at the ball, or the letter we had been afraid to read, or that we had read too often. Nothing seems to us changed. Out of the unreal shadows of the night comes back the real life that we had known. We have to resume it where we had left off, and there steals over us a terrible sense of the necessity for the continuance of energy in the same wearisome round of stereotyped habits, or a wild longing, it may be, that our eyelids might open some morning upon a world that had been refashioned anew in the darkness for our pleasure, a world in which things would have fresh shapes and colors, and be changed, or have other secrets, a world in which the past would have little or no place, or survive, at any rate, in no conscious form of obligation or regret, the remembrance even of joy having its bitterness, and the memories of pleasure their pain."Yep.

  • Barry Pierce
    2018-10-18 04:37

    So I read all of Wilde's plays a couple of years ago but for some reason I never read this at the time. This is probably the number one most requested book for me to read. So I read it. Are ya happy now!? ARE YA!?I really rather enjoyed this. Well, obviously. I mean, did you honestly think I wasn't going to like The Picture of Dorian Gray? It's by Oscar Wilde for fuck's sake. His prose is like spilled honey flowing across a wooden table and waterfalling onto the floor beneath. The viscous liquid flowing slowly over the edge. His plot, perfectly paced, moves slowly as we wade deeper and deeper into Dorian Gray's maniacal life. Over the edge we go as everything goes wrong, there's death, there's pain, there's long conversations about art. We hit the floor as we finish and we see nothing but sweetness amassing around us as we escape from Wilde's prose. Putting the book down you see the light has hit the stream and it glows and it shines and it sparkles and you stand there mesmorised by what you're witnessing and you put the book back on your shelf and feel sorry for the book you read next. So, yeah, it's good.

  • Emily May
    2018-10-07 04:43

    "The sitter is merely the accident, the occasion. It is not he who is revealed by the painter; it is rather the painter who, on the coloured canvas, reveals himself. The reason I will not exhibit this picture is that I am afraid that I have shown in it the secret of my own soul."And so begins this tale of art and sin. I would highly recommend first watching the movie Wilde starring the wonderful Stephen Fry, it is a film which takes the audience on a journey through the life of the tormented writer, from the beginnings of his fame to his later incarceration for "gross indecency" - a charge used to imprison individuals when it was impossible to prove sodomy. Wilde was sentenced to two years hard labour and died not long after being freed due to health problems gained during those two years. Looking at Wilde's story from a twenty-first century perspective, it is sad and horrifying to realise this man was indirectly sentenced to death for being gay. The "hard labour" prescribed was carried out in various ways but one of the most common was the treadmill:This machine made prisoners walk continuously uphill for hours on end and had many long-term effects on people's health.Why do I think it's important to know this? Because, as Wilde claims, in every piece of art there is more of the artist than anything else. And I believe this is especially true of The Picture of Dorian Gray more than perhaps any other fictional work I've read. In this novel, Wilde explores the nature of sin, of morality and immorality. The homoerotic undertones between Dorian Gray, Basil Hallward and Lord Henry Wotton are, I think, the author's little expression of his own secret "sins" within his work. Rarely does a work of fiction so deeply seem to mirror elements of the author's life.By 1891, when The Picture of Dorian Gray was published, Oscar Wilde had met and fallen in love with Lord Alfred Douglas and they had begun a semi-secret affair, by which I mean that many were suspicious of the relationship but didn't argue with Wilde's claims that they shared a Socrates/Plato love that is between a close teacher and student. The idolisation of Dorian Gray's youth and beauty, his tendency to be mean at random, these characteristics all fit with the description and personality of Lord Alfred Douglas. For me, there is no real question as to whether part of Dorian is meant to be Mr Wilde's lover.I think if you familiarise yourself with Oscar Wilde, this becomes a very personal novel, much more than just a disturbing horror story where a man sells his soul. But even without any additional information, I think this is a sad and haunting book that tells of the joyful naivete of youth and the sad wisdom of maturity.

  • Ana
    2018-09-21 02:35

    “Behind every exquisite thing that existed, there was something tragic.” This book is dark unicorns and rainbows. It's chocolate ice cream with cherries on top. It's a pizza with everything on it. It's a fluffy kitten. It's ice cold lemonade on a hot summer day. It is absolutely marvellous.I couldn't help but include this in my review. Keanu Reeves is the real life Dorian Gray.

  • Bookdragon Sean
    2018-10-08 23:49

    I finished reading this last night, and afterwards I spent an entire hour staring into space so I could contemplate over the majesty of this work. It left me speechless. This book is exquisite; it is an investigation into the human soul, the power of vanity and the problems of living a life with not a single consequence for your actions. It’s truly powerful stuff. It begins with a simple realisation, and perhaps an obvious one. But, for Dorian it is completely life changing. He realises that beauty is finite. It won’t last forever. It’s like a flower, temporary and splendid. So if you’re a young man whose appearance is your singular quality, then this is some damn scary news. People only want to be with you because you’re attractive and charming; they want to be near you, and with you, for your looks only. So when that goes what do you have left? Nothing. No friends. No love. Only age. So what do you do? How do you retain your singular quality? Well, the answer is simple, you copy Doctor Faustus (The Tragical History of the Life and Death of Doctor Faustus) and sell your soul to the devil!"How sad it is!" murmured Dorian Gray with his eyes still fixed upon his own portrait. "How sad it is! I shall grow old, and horrible, and dreadful. But this picture will remain always young. It will never be older than this particular day of June. . . . If it were only the other way! If it were I who was to be always young, and the picture that was to grow old! For that -- for that -- I would give everything! Yes, there is nothing in the whole world I would not give! I would give my soul for that!"And this is where the real depravity begins. Dorian’s world has no consequences. Everything he does is attributed to the painting, everything. Any regret or malice leaves him quickly and is transferred to the canvas. So he can’t technically feel emotion for an extended period of time; thus, his attitude becomes one of nonchalance. He becomes a shell, an emotionless creature who can only seek his sin: vanity. He surrounds himself with beauty. His house is full of art, brilliant music and every luxury known to man. You name it. Dorian’s got it. Only through seeking new experiences, these pleasures, can Dorian’s being remain animated. I intentionally used the word “being” for Dorian’s body no longer harbours his soul; it’s in the painting. Everything he does is for his own indulgence; he just doesn’t care what affect his presence has on others. The prefect moment is all he lives for. “I don't want to be at the mercy of my emotions. I want to use them, to enjoy them, and to dominate them.”The character of Dorian Gray is an interesting study because he is representative of many things. He shows how a seemingly pure soul can be corrupted if it’s left in a sense of privation and given terrible guidance. Also he is suggestive of the Victorian ideal of the perfect societal image. One must be respectable at all times, and have all the appropriate airs and graces. But behind closed doors, or perhaps even a curtain, anything goes. He is suggestive of the hidden evils of Victorian society as behind the mask was many dark things. For example, the Empire and colonialism to the Victorians was a wonderful thing; it built wealth and structure, but in reality it destroyed culture and subjected peoples to slavery. The same things can be said of child labour, the exploitation of women and terrible working conditions. Everything exists behind a veil of grandeur, and this is no less true for Dorian. The homosexual suggestions are practically ground-breaking. Wilde wasn’t the only Victorian author to suggest such things. Robert Louis Stevenson’sThe Strange Case of Doctor Jekyll and Mr Hydecan be read in a similar vein, but Wilde was much more explicit. It’s not cryptic; it’s just plain homosexual lust for all to see on the part of Basil and (perhaps?) even Sir Henry later on. It’s still rather horrific that Wilde was actually arrested for homosexual acts. Silly Victorians. The novel also shows that despite being corrupted to such a degree, to commit murder in such a terrible sense, Dorian (the Victorian man?) isn’t beyond all redemption. He can still come back from his deeds and end it all. The ending was perfection. This has great allegorical meaning.

  •  Danielle The Book Huntress (Back to the Books)
    2018-09-24 23:58

    The Picture of Dorian Gray is a hard book to review. After reading such eloquent, beautiful, and rich writing, I am at a loss for how to command my comparatively paltry ability to use words to express how I felt about this book.Forgive me as I go back to AP English for a few moments. I asked myself what were the themes of this novel. Here is my list:IdentityExperience BeautyThe triumph on senses over reasonAccountabilityI will attempt to build my review, in part, around the discussion of these themes.IdentityDorian Gray was a flawed man who was essentially empty inside. He was very young when this story began, seemingly full of potential. Sadly, he invested all his sense of worth in his external beauty, doing little to grow the inner man; unless you consider his descent into depravity, discovering more and more excesses for the meaningless value of those experiences (since his mentor Lord Henry taught him that experience has no value), yet he was strangely curious as to how they would affect the portrait of his soul. He was not quite a tragic figure, because I could not feel sorry for him. He had made this horrible decision (and I believe he had opportunities to repent of it, which he didn't take), but he chose never to take responsibility for himself. Which leads to the next theme.AccountabilityAs I said above, I could feel no sympathy for Dorian Gray. Why? Because he never took responsibility for his actions. Being accountable for one's own actions is a crucial aspect of self-development, at least in my humble opinion. If a person cannot do that, they are doomed to eternal immaturity. This was Dorian's fate. It was Basil's fault for painting the picture. It was Sybil's fault for being a bad actress, and making him fall out of love with her. All the people he ruined in his relentless pursuit of pleasure and debauchery ruined themselves. He took no part in their ruination. Ultimately, he even blamed the picture, and sought to destroy it as the only true evidence of his black soul. I feel like this: If you're going to be a bad, selfish person, own up to it. Don't try to act like your sins should be laid at other people's feet. That was the route the Mr. Dorian Gray took.ExperienceLord Henry was the man who opens Dorian's eyes to the fact that the only thing he has to his advantage is the beauty of his youth, that he should enjoy life while he is young enough to experience it fully. He states that experience is not a teacher, and that men don't learn from the mistakes they make as they live. Your experiences don't count for anything. It seemed to be a self-fulfilling prophecy for Dorian Gray. Instead of realizing how his selfish, shallow actions could hurt and destroy others, he never did do that. He merely went from one fixation to the other, marking the effects on the portrait that he guarded jealously. In the end, there was no value to what he experienced. He was just wasting time (in my opinion).The triumph of sensation over reasonDorian Gray became a voluptuary, lost in sensations. He didn't focus on becoming a learned person, only experiencing what he encountered in his pursuits, wallowing in those sensations; until he grew bored, and moved onto the next one. Lord Henry seemed like a good mentor. A man who appeared so intelligent, with a saying for everything. A witty, entertaining man, who had a reputation for saying utterly wicked things. But he wasn't a deep man. He didn't believe what he said. It was an image that he projected for lack of anything else to do as an aristocrat who had no need to work for a living. Dorian Gray took this as gospel, and took it to the next level. As a result, it made his life utterly meaningless. Sadly, his friend Basil, who was a fairly wise person, was dismissed, and made fun of by Lord Henry. I almost felt like Basil and Lord Henry were the warring aspects of Dorian's conscience, at times.BeautyWhat is beauty? I tend to think it's a double-edged sword. We are all attracted to things that are beautiful, that have a physical appeal. But, should we be content with merely a comely appearance, while the inside is rotted? Dorian Gray was a man of such unearthly beauty that people could not believe he was capable of the debauchery he had committed. Those who didn't heed the warnings given to them, came to rue it. Basil, who painted the young Dorian's fateful picture, couldn't accept that Dorian had become such a horrible person. What a sad fate that was for Basil.I felt several things as I read this book: interest, curiosity, disgust, sadness, and ultimately, a sense that justice had been done, in a very strange, but fitting way.One thing that became very apparent to me as I read this novel, was Oscar Wilde's considerable wit. I imagine he was quite entertaining to be around. In the preface, Oscar Wilde says that all art is meaningless. What was he trying to say with this story? Nothing?I have trouble believing that. This was a novel I couldn't dismiss and treat as mere brain candy. There was some message there that hammered away at my brain. I do believe that Mr. Wilde hints at the subjective nature of art (which includes literature). I think that we could all read the same story and take away different things from it. Our brains are so very different, and the pathways are nurtured and developed by our various experiences, and our own values. So, that we will all come away from viewing a picture or reading a story with a hand-tailored message. Maybe that's what he means by saying that an artist strives not to be present in his work. Instead, it is a mirror reflecting the viewer. That makes sense to me, actually.What message did I come away with?At the end of the day, I believe that Dorian Gray led a worthless life. His eternal youth counted for nothing. He never grew as a person, and he used the bounteous gifts he'd been given selfishly. He did horrible things that made it even worse. He was lucky in that he didn't live long enough to count the full cost of those actions. He allowed the portrait to take the weight of those sins intead of letting them rest where they belonged. If anything really bothers me as a person, it's the thought of my time on this earth being wasted. Never having accomplished anything of value. For that reason, I found Dorian Gray to be a very sad man, but I could not feel sorry for him.So, is this a horror novel, you might ask? I think this is a thinking person's horror novel. It is a study of how the sins we commit cannot be hidden, even if we lie to ourselves about that. Interestingly enough, Mr. Wilde does not elaborate on what vile acts Dorian committed. We are left to our own expansive imaginations to surmise the bulk of what he'd done. Some people don't believe in such a thing as sin. If you don't believe in sin, how could it have a cost? It didn't matter that Dorian Gray didn't acknowledge his sins. They caught up with him in the end. The horror is how he confronted the consequences of his sins, yet turned away from them, locking that manifestation away in the attic to view with a detached sort of curiosity. The horror is the lives he destroyed, but never felt more than a moment's remorse. Fundamentally, Dorian Gray was an angelically beautiful monster. The horror is that we can look upon beauty, and we can be fooled into never asking what lies beneath it.

  • Elyse
    2018-10-08 02:45

    This is the first time I've read this classic book....but I've loved Oscar Wilde for as long as I can remember. There is much to take away from this book. Themes exploring shallowness, selfishness, superficiality, hedonism, morality, and flaws of life and being human. The dialogue is witty and humorous. Oscar Wilde had great insights on beauty....I love this quote:"But beauty, real beauty, ends where an intellectual expression begins. Intellect is in itself a mode of exaggeration, and destroys the harmony of any face. The moment one sits down to think, one becomes all nose, or all forehead, or something horrid. Look at the successful men in any of the learn professions. How perfectly hideous they are! Except, of course, in the Church. But then in the Church they don't think. A bishop keeps on saying at the age of 80 what he was told to say when he was a boy of eighteen, and as a natural consequence he always looks absolutely delightful". Very reflective read....a little like looking into a mirror!

  • Trevor
    2018-09-30 07:49

    This is another of those books I’ve been meaning to read for ages and kept putting off. Although I’ve a particularly good reason for putting this one off, as a very good friend of mine, who died a couple of years ago, spoke to me about this book and I was worried that might make it hard to read for quite other reasons.He said that when he read this book as a young man it made him certain that he was not homosexual. Now, that in itself was enough to make me curious about the book. This is a book that could only have been written by a homosexual male and it is a book about homosexuality in very many ways. The obsession with youth and beauty is almost a cliché of homosexual obsessions – though the ‘dandy’, the vanity of men, is much more common now, I think. We are increasingly a culture obsessed with appearance. I wonder if reading the book and seeing this obsession was the thing that convinced my friend he was not homosexual, if that was the thing that made him say, ‘no, that’s not me’. Or rather if it was the expression of desire very early in the book for Dorian Gray by Basil, his painter and ardent admirer, that convinced him. Lord Harry is one of those talking desk calendars, in fact, other than Hamlet, I think it would be hard to find a book with more quotable quotes per page. Some of them are deliciously funny and others are just the sort of illumination that a match struck in a dark room makes. There were moments in this book, as there are in other works by Wilde, when one gets a feeling of premonition of his fate – it is hard to think of a sadder story than that of the last years of his life, or one that makes more plain how incredibly stupid are societies that punish people for their sexuality. There would be very little I could not forgive Wilde for, particularly after he wrote The Importance of Being Earnest – this book, his only novel, is nearly as good.Our sins are not quite displayed as clearly on our faces as is assumed here, but our lives do mark us – it is a pity that in our obsession with youth that we forget how beautiful our scars can be and that love, real love, the love that touches us most deeply, is when another accepts our scars and loves us for them, rather than in spite of them.One of the most quotable quotes in this book is an attack on realism in fiction – “That is the reason I hate vulgar realism in literature. The man who could call a spade a spade should be compelled to use one. It is the only thing he is fit for.” I understand this is hardly a ‘realistic’ story – I mean, it is really a myth and takes liberties with ‘reality’ so as to comment on the world through the form of a myth – but like all such stories centred on something that is clearly ‘over-the-top’ it is contained in a shell that struck me as remarkably realistic. There was no time when I felt Wilde was calling a spade an implement for cultivation or some such silly phrase. His writing is always clear and to the point. The most ‘flowery’ language is perhaps when he is describing the perfumes Gray becomes fascinated in and seeks to understand ‘what there was in frankincense that made one mystical, and in ambergris that stirred one’s passions’, but even this is hardly as romantic or less real than TS Eliot’s (that most ‘modern’ of writers) “In vails of ivory and coloured glass / Unstoppered, lurked her strange synthetic perfumes,” Even at his most flowery, Wilde is hardly ‘unrealistic’.I came to this book expecting it to be much ‘sillier’ than it turned out to be. I’ve no idea why I thought this – perhaps because I knew that the central idea of the book was that a man has an odd relationship with a painting in that he stays young while the painting gets old. But the book wasn’t nearly as silly as I thought it would be. I really did enjoy it.

  • Huda Yahya
    2018-10-15 01:43

    ما هو أبشع كابوس تخيلته في حياتك؟ما الذي تراه أصعب شيء يمكن أن تتعرض لهماذا لو استطعت تجميع كل خطاياك و تخبئتها في مكان سري لا يعلمه ‏سواكماذا لو استطعت أن تنفض يدك عن أي جريمة ارتكبت‏وأي شر اقترفتماذا لو استطعت تحقيق المستحيلوضمنت الخلود..؟؟وماذا لو كان ذلك المكان السري هو وجهك الذي نحته فيلسوف فنان ‏على الورق..‏وماذا لو كان بإمكانك رؤية جميع مفاسدك تتجلى يوما بعد يوم على ‏وجهك الكامل الجمال في عيون الكلسواك..‏:::::::::::ما رأيك يا دوريان في قول المسيحماذا يستفيد الإنسان لو خسر روحه وربح العالم أجمع؟---------‎ ‎هذا هو ملخص الرواية في نظريالرواية المعتقة بالفلسفةوالسخريةوالفانتازيا‏ ‏ الرواية المدهشة والمخيفة وكاشفة خبايا النفس البشرية‏‎ ‎يعري فيها وايلد -لا النفس البشرية فقط بل المجتمع الإنكليزي بأكملهوزيف من كان يطلق عليهم الطبقات النبيلةإنها كاشفة لكلل ما هو خاوٍ بريقه خادع فور ما تقترب منه يتكشف لك الخواء والسطحية ‏والأنانية....والرواية تترك منبهرافمك مفتوح على أخره في شهقة لا صوت لها‎ ‎ :::::::::::ربما من أسباب عشقي لأوسكار وايلد هي قدرته الفذة على الخيالوقدرته على الإتيان بأفضل العبارات إدهاشافي عمقها وفلسفتها وسخريتهاأكثر بكثير في رأيي من شو أو مارك تويندوريان جراي كان العمل الأول الذي أقرؤه لهذا العقل اللامعومن يومها أدمنته

  • Henry Avila
    2018-10-16 07:55

    "A face without a heart", so said Shakespeare in Hamlet, but it applies to the portrait of Dorian Gray even better.... When the young gentleman Dorian Gray from a wealthy aristocratic family in Victorian England, has his picture completed something is missing, Basil Hallward, the painter senses it and insists that no one sees his greatest work, except a few people ... The witty Lord Henry Wotton, Dorian's soon to be best friend seems amused, a shy artist! All three are fascinated by the painting, discussing it at length in Mr.Hallward's house. The lord is a notorious man, with a well- deserved evil reputation, warned by many to stay away from him. Nevertheless Gray's a lonely orphan, needs excitement in his dreary life, Wotton tells Dorian to have fun while he is still young, it will not last long. Mr.Gray has good looks, and like a moth to a flame the boy can't resist. Dorian wishes that the portrait ages while he remains young, as time goes by, Dorian would give his soul for that, Lord Henry laughs at the oath, strangely his request is fulfilled shortly afterwards. Dorian meets a beautiful seventeen- year- old actress, both fall madly in love, later the nervous Sibyl Vane, gives a really bad performance in front of Gray , and his two friends, Wotton, Hallward, the young gentleman is crushed , and so disappointed he leaves her. Sibyl then kills herself, James her brother had pledged to annihilate anyone who harms his sister, he will cause Mr.Gray much concern subsequently. The wicked lord tells the distraught youth to forget about it, "Eternal youth, infinite passion, pleasures subtle and secrets, wild joy and wilder sins". All this and only the picture to show its evil, a great bargain Dorian feels. Rumors abound about Dorian, they the people look at his face and see only purity, Gray continues his hedonistic life, murder , another suicide and a killing results ... In a locked, quiet, dark room upstairs at his home, where the curious Mr.Gray keeps the picture, it Grotesquely Changes, whenever more wickedness is committed by the owner. The ugly side of Dorian, only he sees... Later into the shadows , Dorian goes to get opium, he wants salvation through drugs, blackout his memories but gloom is everywhere, a thick atmosphere of foreboding, intense desperation and immense helplessness, prevails. Reaching for something, that will save his poor soul, make him feel worthwhile that life has some meaning, is all lost? A mournful torrent rushes Dorian forward always forward, into the abyss, the darkness, the endless unknown regions, next oblivion? The light is going out, Dorian must face his destiny, he couldn't escape himself ...

  • Nayra.Hassan
    2018-09-25 02:42

    بسهولة شديدة يستحيل البياض سواد لكن كم هو صعب إعادة البياض لقلب اسود مختوم بالمعاصي..مفتون بالاثام..كقلبك يا دوريان♥هذا وجهه سمح و ملامحه وضاءة تشع نور و هذا وجهه فظ غليظ خشن حجب نورههل وجوهنا تحمل اثامنا؟هل تجاعيدنا =خطايانا بالطبع لا☆ و الا لما كان في اللغة تعبيرات مثل و أسفر عن وجهه. .او اماط اللثام عن ملامحه الحقة... فالشيطان جميل دوما هل تعبر ملامحنا عن صفاتنا ؟ بمرور الزمن ..نعم ..لهذا كلنا نخاف مرور الزمن..و بصماته التي يتركها حول العيون المبتسمة دوما ....او الجباه العابسةللابد..لكن تظل العيون مرآة الروح..فقط لمن أجاد قراءتهاهناك من يلبس قناعه فور استيقاظه و يجيد إخفاء وجهه الحقيقي لسنوات ..و هناك من يضع جرائمه و جحوده و سفالاته في دولاب مغلق..و لكن لابد و سيأتي يوم و يتم فتحه..فهل سيتحمل ما سيراه؟؟ قرأتها في سن 18 وظل الجدل الذي اثارته في نفسي حاضرا حتى راجعتها في سن 30..من الكلاسيكيات الواجب قراءتها في سن مبكرة..في سن الجمال والشباب. .و من افضل مائة رواية باللغة الإنجليزية لا يخطر على بالك للحظة واحدة ان كلنا دوريان جراي..ابدا ..نعم كل منا لديه دولابه المغلق على ما ستره الله عليه ..لكننا نحمل اخطاءنا في قلوبنا و عقولنا..لا مهرب في وجود الضميراختلف انا مع اوسكاروايلد في حياته ومبادئه واسلوبه بل وكثير من اعماله ولكن مع دوريان الامر يختلف...فهي مرآة جيدة لنقاط ضعف هامة بالنفس البشرية..ولم تكن لتحوز هذا القدر من الاهتمام لوكانت بطلتها إمرأة

  • Paul Bryant
    2018-10-08 07:47

    I don't know what I was quite expecting here. It's a psychological horror story with a lot of comic relief, in the form of the endless witty paradoxes. After page 30 you are thinking that if Lord Henry makes just one more crack you're going to knock his monocle off his family crest and grind it underfoot. Oscar often clearly thinks he's being hilarious with his wit with a capital W – and maybe it's me, but Oscar Wilde often sounds like a parody of Oscar Wilde, like in the Monty Python sketchWHISTLER: Your Majesty is like a stream of bat's piss.(gasps) THE PRINCE OF WALES: What?WHISTLER: It was one of Wilde's.OSCAR WILDE: I, um, I, ah, I merely meant, Your Majesty, that, ah, you shine out like a shaft of gold when all around is dark.THE PRINCE OF WALES:Oh, ho-ho, very good.But of course, some of it is very good stuff :The one charm of marriage is that it makes a life of deception absolutely necessary for both parties. I never know where my wife is, and my wife never knows what I am doing. When we meet we tell each other the most absurd stories with the most serious faces. The fact was, one of her married daughters had come up quite suddenly to stay with her, and to make matters worse, had actually brought her husband.One of those middle-aged mediocrities so common in London clubs who have no enemies but are thoroughly disliked by their friends.But his character Lord Henry goes on and on with the wit and the aphorismsShe is a peacock in everything but beauty…she tried to found a salon and only succeeded in opening a restaurant…. One can't stand other people having the same faults as ourselves. And you get a lot of guff about womenNo woman is a genius. Women are a decorative sex. They never have anything to say, but they say it charmingly. A man can be happy with any woman, as long as he does not love her. As for conversation, there are only five women in London worth talking to, and two of these can't be admitted into decent society. (that last one reminds me of the weird quote from Captain Beefheart – "There are only forty people in the world and five of them are hamburgers". Oh, how rude of me – Oscar, allow me to introduce Captain Beefheart. Captain Beefheart, may I present Mr Oscar Wilde – I believe you may have heard the name.)Then there's the necessarily undeclared but pretty open gayness. How the two older men worship this young Adonis Dorian – they openly salivate! - and how he reciprocates too. He says to Lord Henry 30 minutes after meeting him :I feel I must come with you. Do let me. And you will promise to talk to me all the time? No one talks so wonderfully as you do.What a flirt. I don't think boys talk to each other like this anymore. They're a little more discreet these days.So as the story saunters along, and at a couple of points you think there never will be a story, the banter and the brittle conversations die away and Dorian, his portrait miraculously ageing instead of him, realises he can "sin" without consequence. He turns into a vicious voluptuary, a promiscuous profligate, an effulgent epicurean and a licentious libertine. In time the word gets round, and society reacts with the strongest possible disapproval :He was very nearly blackballed at a West End club… and it was said that on one occasion when he was brought by a friend into the smoking-room of the Churchill, the Duke of Berwick and another gentleman got up in a marked manner and went out.That would cut a fellow to the very quick, though, wouldn't it. What would be the modern equivalent? There isn't one. Both Dorian and the novel turn strange. You might think that the life of a young handsome sensualist would consist of orgies and opium, roofies and deflorations, and maybe a black mass thrown in for kicks, with goats and orphans, but you would be wrong. Dorian plunges into a life of strange obsessions – for ten pages we get elaborate lists of a) perfumes, b) jewels, c) tapestries, and d) world music – yes, that came as a surprise to me too :He used to give curious concerts in which mad gypsies tore wild music from little zithers or grave yellow-shawled Tunisians plucked at the strained strings of monstrous lutesSo WOMAD then.Dorian collects instruments like the furuparis, human bone flutes, sonorous green jaspers, the clarin, the teponazali, some yotl-bells and a Stratocaster made from the skulls of Tibetan lamas. No, I made up the last one. But this is a real quote : "he had a special passion, also, for ecclesiastical vestments". I was kind of disappointed. Is this really debauchery? I don't think Ozzy Osbourne would recognise it as such.With the change of gear in the book, we find that Oscar can come out with some quite extraordinary sentences. Here is a favourite :There are few of us who have not sometimes wakened before dawn, either after one of those dreamless nights that make us almost enamoured of death, or one of those nights of horror and misshapen joy, when through the chambers of the brain sweep phantoms more terrible than reality itself, and instinct with that vivid life that lurks in all grotesques, and that lends to Gothic art its enduring vitality, this art being, one might fancy, especially the art of those whose minds have been troubled with the malady of reverie.Oscar's solitary novel is a gothic tale of a man who came to think that he could commit sin without consequence. And he couldn't. It's either curiously conservative – God will smite you down, there's no escape, and nor should there be – or it's a coded message of revolution : the idle rich have got it coming to them. I think Oscar became a convert to some form of socialism round about the time he wrote his novel, so I'm going with the latter interpretation. It suits me. I think there are fifty shades of Dorian Gray even now cashing in their half million dollar bonuses and thinking that they'll be young and invulnerable forever. But vengeance will come like a thief in the night.

  • Kalliope
    2018-10-01 03:42

    Funny how books are moulded by the circumstances in which they have been read.In Dorian Gray, some of its aspects are very easy to grasp and do not need great explanations. For example, Wilde’s epigrammatic style is so very distinct. I have had a lot of fun selecting quotes and peppered with them my reading progress.His sentences are like small diamonds. They can be held and set against the light and moved around so that their different facets will shine and reflect the world around them. They are also so tightly self-contained with an inner perfect structure that cannot be easily modified. They are perfectly balanced. I am thinking of sentences such as:Nothing can cure the soul, but the senses, just as nothing can cure the senses but the soul.These nicely constructed phrases seem to form part of the collection of precious objects that are presented in this novel as in a gallery or Kammerschatz. There is an abundant series of orchids, amethysts, velvety tapestries, emeralds, ivory caskets, jonquils, skull-caps parsemés with pearls, Japanase Foukousas, hyacinths, ear-rings of emeralds, Arabian aspilates, carbuncles of cinnamon-stones....Yes, Wilde's precious epigrams could dangle nicely from a bracelet.Wilde got clearly infected with préciosité during his extended visits to France. This novel has such an obvious debt to the French aesthetic tradition, with its explicit references to the Symbolistes and personalities such as Gautier (with his consolation des arts) and Huysmans, that I almost felt embarrassed. Wilde liked to shock but he himself was bewildered by Huysmans À rebours, published about six years before his own work, in 1884. This “book without a plot” and with that curious jewelled style,.. that characterizes the work of some of the finest artists of the French school of Symbolistes is the culprit of Wilde’s novel. As he diagnoses: Dorian Gray had been poisoned by a book.If Wilde’s book echoes the luscious elements of the French A Rebours, it, however, does have a plot. It is burdened with a very Gothic intrigue which I associate so strongly with Britain and the Victorian puritanical culture. Even if at the time of publication the book run into trouble with the authorities and was partly censored, the moralist background is there. Another clearly discernible aspect is its Faustian theme. And this has fitted very well in my recent book choices. I have lately read the original anonymous Doktor Faustus, plus three of its later variations (Marlowe, Mann, Banville). Dorian Gray presents an interesting adaptation in which Art is the Devil and one of the characters, Lord Henry Wotton, who, like Wilde, loves to pronounce epigrams, plays a sort Mephistophelian role as the messenger or instigator. Wotton spells out the Faustian theme: By the way, what does it profit a man if he gain the whole world and lose – how does the quotation run?—his own soul. P. 209.Another echo to my parallel reading is the Dantean contrapasso that unfolds in some sections of the story, for each crime bears its misshapen brood. But the aspect that has intrigued me the most is less obvious and has to do, again, with the circumstances surrounding the moment I have chosen to read this book. Unavoidably these shape my interpretation.I have recently read Balzac’s Le Chef-d'œuvre inconnu and visited a couple of art exhibitions for which this novel is relevant. Both Cézanne and Picasso were fascinated by Balzac’s work because they identified with one of the characters, Frenhofer, the artist who seeks to represent the ideal in art, with tragic repercussions. In several of his paintings Picasso developed Balzac’s theme: the painter in front of his canvas trying to extract from the model its inner qualities and the ability to represent them through beauty. Cézanne’s practice of working and reworking a given motif confirms a similar obsession in this quest for the ideal. So, it is to this particularity in Dorian Gray that I have devoted most thinking. For Wilde has also developed this theme: the relationship between the artist, the sitter and the painting. But in his pen, it becomes a devilish dance, and, as in Balzac, it also proves to be fatal. Art and life and the act of representation. A trio. Which one is to have the upper hand? In his Dorian Gray, Wilde does away with the creator once he has achieved the ideal. The artist has become redundant when it is recognized that his painting had gone quite off. It seemed to me to have lost something. It had lost an ideal (p.208). Without the artist, the process of representation is corrupted and the nature of the sitter is not captured but instead comes apart. Beauty and eternity are split in the pact and the canvas grabs the soul.The trio becomes a duel and just one survives.Art withstands.-------Picasso had felt the threat and he rabidly fought and counterclaimed the role of the painter in face of the negation of the artist that PopArt implied. His painters, his paintings, would not be annihilated.His art is with us. It was his doing.

  • Melanie
    2018-10-12 06:56

    “Some day, when you are old and wrinkled and ugly, when thought has seared your forehead with its lines, and passion branded your lips with its hideous fires, you will feel it, you will feel it terribly.”So, I wanted 2018 to be the year that I try to get back into classics! In the past, I’ve found some of them daunting to read, or just too boring to ever feel invested in. But I feel like The Picture of Dorian Gray was the perfect start.Beautiful art by saku-chann on TumblrI originally was going to give this three stars, because I enjoyed it enough, but was never too invested. I felt annoyed at how these characters were so obviously not straight. I mean, a vast majority of this book is about Dorian taking a wife. Meanwhile, every man in this book just has full page monologues telling Dorian how beautiful he is. And then I sat down to do my review, and I started doing my research. It’s no secret that Oscar Wilde was a gay man. Hell, he was even jailed for his sexuality, and died soon after from all the inhumane injuries he endured while in prison. All three major male character in this book read very… not straight. My friend, Destiny, told me that a lot of readers in the Horror circles make strong arguments that Dorian is in fact pansexual, which makes me happier than I can express with words. Yet, I can’t help but think about parallels with this book that Wilde crafted about “secret sin” and how it mirrored his life and perhaps his sexuality that he ultimately died for. You guys, I have no words. In the 1880s people thought homosexuality was some disease, something to be cured, something not okay to simply just be. Something that was a criminal act. Something that Oscar Wilde was jailed and forced to do hard labor for. And once you start seeing the similarities between Wilde’s life and the events that take place in this book, you will realize that like The Picture of Dorian Gray is so much more important that the surface value of just reading this story. Okay, I do suppose I should tell you about the story now. This is a tale that centers around three men that live in an upper-class London society: ➽ Basil Hallward - Artist who befriends Dorian because he is obsessed with his beauty and lives his life painting many portraits of him, but more importantly, he paints the portrait that this story surrounds. ➽ Lord Henry Wotton - Basil's friend, which is how he meets Dorian. Henry is a manipulator that heavily influences Dorian with his views about what is important in life. ➽ Dorian Gray - Our main character, who starts out so young, innocent, and impressionable. He later is harboring a major secret and will stop at nothing to hide this secret and the events that lead him to this secret.“There are only two kinds of people who are fascinating - people who know absolutely everything and people who know absolutely nothing.”In this book, the value of appearance is heavily touched upon. Youth and beauty seem to be everyone’s priority. It’s scary and sad how much this also mirrors 2018. There is also a huge discussion to be had about good versus evil and how we view that grey area in-between. Yet, these discussions are held in this seamlessly woven story. Overall, even though I didn’t five star this, I really enjoyed it and it was able to evoke a lot of emotion from me. More importantly, I recommend you all to read My dear friend Navessa’s review, which ended up evoking even more emotion from me. She linked this article, which then made me weep. Again, this story is so much more than a paranormal painting, and a man trying to hide secrets. This is a masterpiece and my heart will forever break thinking about this story. Trigger/content warnings: death, murder, suicide, and a ton of misogynistic comments. Blog | Twitter | Tumblr | Instagram | Youtube | Twitch Buddy read with Dani! ❤

  • Jonathan Terrington
    2018-10-13 00:41

    The Picture of Dorian Gray could also be titled A Portrait of the Human Soul, for in his dark and tragic commentary Oscar Wilde spares no liberties in discussing morality, religion, society and the depths of the human condition. It is a deeply moving and inspired novel centering around the defining power of art. It is not an easy novel to read with its dark elements. For in paying heed to Dorian Gray's demise one is drawn into a reflection of their own spiritual condition.For those who have no idea what The Picture of Dorian Gray is about I shall endeavour to describe. As a novel I would class it among the classics of the Gothic tradition, a horror novel with a didactic aim. The story itself focuses around a young man, Dorian Gray, who through the influence of others around him becomes led into moral disillusionment. He becomes obsessed with a picture of his young, vibrant body that reflects his mortal perfection while at the same time living a decadent and corrupt lifestyle. By some unknown curse his image begins to grow old but he physically stays as young as ever. And all this leads to a fascinating climactic moment!The rest of this review has been moved to my website. To read the full review click on the linked text here!

  • Petra X
    2018-09-29 00:42

    Possessing eternal youth and beauty produces exactly the same effect as sentencing a man to life without the possibility of parole. Both have nothing to lose and morals disappear before the desire for immediate self-gratification in all things. And so it is with Dorian Gray. It's a moral story so eventually his evil catches up with him and he dies, as does the criminal. Is Oscar Wilde saying that it is man's essential nature, to be so internally psychopathic and selfish that so long as he can keep his reputation he will wreak havoc on people's lives and not care in the process of enriching his own? Oscar Wilde was a man who held some very nasty views and only cared when extremely similar ones were turned upon himself. (He was imprisoned for homosexuality, but felt it was ok for Dreyfus to be imprisoned on a trumped-up crime but really because he was Jewish. He chose the wrong side on that one and lost even his best friend). I don't like the author, but I do love his prose.I read this book years ago. But the psychological story of a man's realisation that there are no consequences to his actions, nothing is forbidden, everything is permitted, you never forget.

  • Johann (jobis89)
    2018-10-18 01:01

    "Behind every exquisite thing that existed, there was something tragic."Under the influence of a captivating aristocrat, Dorian Gray sells his soul in exchange for prolonged youth and vitality. Part of the deal is that a full-length portrait of Dorian will age and record his sins, whereas he remains unblemished.Picking one quote from this book was like being asked to read just one book for the rest of your life - nigh-on impossible. I hadn't even thought about how difficult it would be until Tes (instagram @paperbackbones) pointed this out and then I got sucked into a vortex of reading different Wilde quotes online... that man was a goddamn genius.This book has achieved a significant title in my reading life; the title of "Favourite Classic". It totally blew me away. To be honest, I only vaguely knew the storyline before picking this one up having encountered Dorian Gray in the TV show Penny Dreadful, but not the specific story that Wilde had created. I didn't think it would be so dark, so I was pleasantly surprised. The writing itself was just another level, quite possibly the most beautiful writing that I've had the pleasure of reading. As my buddy reader Abbie (instagram @ab_reads) and I discussed with each other, we quickly recognised so many quotes that are widely known and can easily be found on places like Pinterest.The three main characters are really interesting, it seems to be that Dorian Gray represents a "normal person," Lord Henry is the bad influence, and Basil is the voice of reason. Dorian Gray himself is incredibly intriguing, at the beginning he is presented as the perfect specimen, and he is vain, but this vanity is only worsened following conversations with Lord Henry wherein he reminds Dorian that his favourable characteristics won't last forever. He wishes that he could forever resemble the picture of youth that Basil has captured in his painting, which is where things begin to go downhill...Although Dorian is indeed captivating, I felt like a lot of my attention was actually placed on Lord Henry. He is the standout character from this story for me. His sass, his insights, his wit, his intelligence, it felt like Lord Henry was a representation of Oscar Wilde himself. And Dorian quickly falls under his spell. It's also interesting that although Lord Henry speaks of pursuing immoral behaviour, he himself never partakes in any. Perhaps towards the end of the book, he may lose some of his likability for other readers, but I still was a fan (I can't help but smile at his insights).I honestly could talk about this book forever and the different themes that are found within, but this is not school and I'm not trying to achieve extra credit, so I'll keep those thoughts to myself! Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed every page of this classic and I'm particularly thankful that my boyfriend bought this book for me, as otherwise I'm not sure I ever would have picked it up. And now he'll be smug *rolls eyes* But this gets all the stars!! I loved it!

  • Manny
    2018-09-24 02:50

    "My dear Jordan!" said Lord Rayner expansively, as the butler discreetly closed the door behind his young visitor. "Really, it is too good to see you again! And what brings you to Cambridge?""Oh, this and that," said the lad, flinging himself casually onto a priceless Ikea divan. "By the way, has there been some mistake in the casting? I thought I was female?""Well, since we're doing Dorian Gray, I hoped you would have no objection to reversing your gender," said his host. "And besides, is there anything quite as female as an attractive young man?""How could one disagree?" murmured the lad, as a becoming blush suffused his ivory cheek. "So, aren't you glad I persuaded you to read it?"The rest of this review is available elsewhere (the location cannot be given for Goodreads policy reasons)

  • İntellecta
    2018-09-30 06:58

    From Dorian's emotional movements, Lord Henry's advice, or Basil Hallward's soulfulness, it is possible for one to take a deeper look into himself and to make new solutions to social behavior. There are many auspicious conclusions to be drawn. The work is original, and the work shines in anarchist accents within this authenticity.It is a work to be considered, questioned and scrutinized...Zitat: "ich habe die Weiber, die einen lieben, satt. Weiber, die einen hassen, sind viel interessanter."

  • Amira Mahmoud
    2018-09-19 01:40

    هي صورة الأحزانهي وجه بلا قلبهي صورة داخل كل منّا، صورة الروح أو صورة النفس أو أيًا ما كان يمكن أن تسميها.الصورة التي تعكس وجهنا الحقيقيّ الذي لا يعرف عنه الناس شيئًايسعى البعض للتفتيش عنها دائمًا، تفقدها بين حين وآخر والعناية بهاوالبعض الآخر يتركها، يحاول دفنها وردمها بعيدًا حتى يتراكم عليها العفن والأتربة.جميعنا يملك هذه الصورة، هذه المرآة؛ تمامًا كدوريان جرايالفارق الوحيد بيننا وبينه أنها كانت دائمًا أمامه، لا يحتاج للبحث والتفتيش عنها كما يفعل التقاة ومهما حاول دفنها وتدميرها والهرب منها كما يفعل الموتى الأحياء فإنها تظهر أمامه بكل وحشيتها وبشاعتها كصفعة قوية يرسلها القدر له علّه يستفيق. ماذا يستفيد الإنسان لو خسر روحه وربح العالم أجمع؟احترام الآخرين؟ ولكن كيف سيجد في هذا العزاء إذا كان يعلم أن ما يحترمه الآخرين لأجله ليس له أي أساس من الصحة؟اللذة؟ كيف يستطيع أن يشعر بالنشوة والاستمتاع دون أن تقلق صورته هذه لحظات استمتاعه؟ كيف ستكون اللذة خالصة وروحه القبيحة تطارده؟ماذا يستفيد؟ أبدًا لنّ نعرف ولن نفهم هؤلاء.إن منشأ احترامنا للآخرين هو خوفنا من ألا يحترمنا الآخرون، وأساس التفاؤل هو فزعنا من الكوارث لا أكثر ولا أقل.منذ أن بدأت الرواية بفلسفة اللورد هنريّ وكنت أعلم أنني أمام رواية عميقة الأثركانت آراؤه غاية في التطرف، استمتع بقرائتها ومحاولة قياس مدى اتفاقي واختلافي معها دون أن أصل لقرار.فأنا وعقلي نستمتع بقرائتها ونستمتع بشخصية اللورد هنريّ المجنونة الغير مألوفة وطريقته الساخرة، لكن كلما تذكر تأثير هذه الأقوال في نفس دوريان جراي حين كانت براءة روحه كما براءة وجهه أشمئز.رغم أنه لا يمكن الجزم بأن هذه الآراء الفلسفية أو المتفلسفة هي ما غير تشكيل روح دوريان جراي، فهو بالتأكيد كان يملك عقل حين كان يستمع إليها.ولم تكن لتغيره بهذا الشكل إلا إذا كانت تجد صدى لها في نفسه.ما أشبه الخضوع لأفكار الغير بالعبودية، وما أشبه إخضاع الغير لأفكارنا بالاستعباد. إن التأثير في الغير يُكسب الإنسان إحساسًا بالقوة لا نظير له في الحياة!إن تأثيرك في شخص ما معناه أنك تسبغ روحك عليه، مما يملأ رأسه بأفكار ليست أفكاره ويملأ قلبه بعواطف ليست في طبعه ويجعل من رذاائله رذائل مستعارة من الغير، وبذلك يصبح صدي يرددّ ترنيمة رجل آخر، أو ممثلاً يلعب دورًا لم يُكتب له. إن غاية الحياة تقدم الذات وما خلق كل منا إلا لينميّ مَلكاته ويصون طبيعته على الوجه الأكمل. ولكن الناس هذه الأيام يخافون من أنفسهم، وينسون أن واجب الإنسان الأول هو واجبه نحو نفسه. ليست القراءة الأولى لأوسكار وايلد على ما أذكر، ورغم أنني لا أتذكر ماذا كانت القراءة الأولى لكن دوريان جراي ستبقى من الروايات الاستثنائية التي لا تستطيع نسيانها ولا نسيان تأثيرها.وأيضًا لن تستطيع نسيان نهايتها!كلما سأتذكرها حتمًا سأفتش عن صورتيّ...تمّت

  • Emily (Books with Emily Fox)
    2018-09-29 02:41

    (3.5) This reminded me of why I like classics. Some parts dragged on too long but I enjoyed it overall!

  • ميقات الراجحي
    2018-10-01 05:45

    (1)اللوحة : الـفـكرة تخرج من رأس صاحـبهـاتبهره تلك التفاصيل الدقيقة في هذا الـوجهالذي ينز طفولة ورقة وعـذوبة. هو مـشـروعناجح بالنسبة للرسام الذي ألتقط الـفـكرة ....قرأت هذا العمل في بريطانيا – لندن. ولمن يعرف تفاصيل العصر الفكتوري وماقبله وبعده بخمسين عام سيعرف أثر هذه الأجواء على قراءة أوسكار وايلد لنص يعود للقرن التاسع عشر ميلادي علمًا أن أوسكار هو أخر ما أنتجته الفترة الفكتورية ونهضتها الأدبية التي كانت ضمن سلسلة طويلة من الحـضارة كانت أوروبا قد برزت فيه بعد أن أفلت شمس العرب. كنت أتخيل كل شخصيات العمل أثناء قراءة الرواية. أتخيل "بازل / بازيل هولوورد" الرسام الذي هو عند أوسكار وايلد مكتشف الجمال الذي يمر بحياتنا دون أن نلتفت إليه حتى يخبرنا أحدهم أنه هو.. كنت أتخيل في أي لحظة الشر الذي يغلفه الجمال "دوريان قراي" الوسيم – حفيد كيلسو – يخرج في أي لحظة ممسك بقيضته عصاه النحيلة.. كنت أتخيل "اللورد هنري" وعنجهيته في إستخدام ثقافته على الناس ومعرفته بتاريخ المقربين من طبقته.. كنت أتخيل المارة من السيدات إيهن ستكون ضحية دوريان التالية، وأنا أنظر في المباني ذات الطراز المعماري الأوربية ومثلثات الأسطح والقرميد الأحمر حتى بقيت التفاصيل عالقة في ذاكرتي منذ (2009م) وبعد مشاهدة فيلم (بن بارنز، وكولين روث) الذي جعل الكثير يعودون للأصل؛ الرواية، عرفت أن الفيلم نجح لفنتازية النص. رغم أن قلة أحداث الرعب القوطي الذي لا يتجلى في غير بعض مشاهد القتل ونهاية الرواية التي وفّق أوسكار في إحكام خاتمتها بروعة.(2)الألوان : هاهي الآن تخـرج من كل عـبواتها يعصرها الرسام ويوزّعـهـا بإحـترافية عاليةحسب هذه التـقاسيم لهذا الـوجه القادم من الريف بعد أن سـحرته المدينة مثلما سحرتالرسام هذه الملامح الملائكية. تمتزج الألوان....عندما نويت قراءة العمل كنت أعمل أن قصته ستعجبني لمعرفتي بجوهر القصة دون التفاصيل وأنها لن تكون مثل رواية ستوكر الشهيرة دراكولا، أوعمل ماري شيلي الشهير فرانكشتاين وهما علمين بالمناسبة أعجبت بهما لكلاسيكتهما وجمال حبكتهما أكثر من القصة. بينما نص أوسكار ساحر وساخر ويحاول مخاطبة الناس من خلال الحياة في الجماد والطبيعة أكثر من الحياة التي في الجسد.(3)العقـد : الصفقة التي تولّد عنها خـلقٌ جديدخلاصة الفكرة/ الرغبة، والألوان/ الحياة فيالسعي لكسر كل وحشية العمر الذي يحرمالجمال سره، الآن لن يبلغ منه هذا الوحششيء ولـكن سـوف يسكـنهُ شيطان اللـوحة....كانت أمنية دوريان قراي وهو يتأمل صورته وهي تفيض شبابًا وجمال أن قال مندهشًا "إذا استطعت أن أبقى شابًا وهذه الصورة تشيخ. سأبذل كل شيء، سأمنح روحي من أجل ذلك"، وقد أستجابت له الصورة / الشيطان فوهبته الشباب ووهبها روحه. ليصبح جسده مرآة الطبقة المخملية في كل بريطانيا وليس فقط مثالًآ على "دبلن" مسقط رأسه. لذا بقيت الصورة . اللوحة القاتمة محل جدل بين كل طبقات لندن إبان نشر الرواية على مراحل – فصول – فكان يخاطب تلك الطبقة التي لا تعمل ولكن مكانتها تمنحها حق العيش مما تحتفظ به من ممتلكات وإقطاعات وما يأتي من دخلها الكبير. فكان هذا النقد موجهه لهم بقسوة فكانوا عند أوسكار كلهم دوريان وكان هنري الشيطان – كما أراه – هو ذلك المجتمع الراقي السياسي الذي منحهم هذه السلطة في العربذة والإنحراف واللامبالاة والإنغماس في لذة العيش. طبقة النبلاء كما كان يطلق عليها في العصور الوسطى أضحت في االتاريخ الحديث هي الطبقة المخملية حملة لقب اللوردات وكبار التجار وهم الطبقة المخملية الذين وجهه لهم أوسكار نقدًا لاذعًا حد الوجع وهو يُعرّي مجتمعهم وتفاصيلهم الصغيرة وكأنهم أتفقوا جميعًا على ممارسة السخط على الطبقة الكادحة – البلوتاريا – ونظرتهم الإستعلائية ودناءة سلوك أكثرهم إن لم يكونوا كلهم بالجملة وفق نظرة وايلد حيث كان يسخر منهم على طريقته الخاصة في أكثر من شخصية الفنان وصاحب الإقطاع والطبيب والتاجر وسيدات القصور اللواتي يبحثهم عن إرضاء شهواتهن.(4)هاهي اللـوحة تأكل بـعضها الأخر. الألوان تحيل نفسها لسوادٍ قـاتم وغـضب، يسمعهاتصرخ عليه في اللـيل وتسلبهُ الرضا. لـكن الرغبة تسيطر عـليه يـباركـها منظره الآسر في العيون الأخرى. واللوحة تـصرخ أكـثر....الشر الذي يسكن اللوحة يغادر بقسوة نحو فضاء الواقع متمثلًا في الجنس والشذوذ وكل أكسسوارات الرذيلة التي يحدث للإنسان ليشبع رغباته حد النزق والجريمة / القتل. لم يعد دوريان يستطيع كبح جماح الشهوة وقد علم يقينًا أنه لا يشيخ طالما اللوحة سرها باقٍ بينه وبين حدود الإطار.المجتمع الذي يمثله دوريان وبازل وهنري وكل السيدات هو عصر كان رغم رفضه للرذيلة من خلال الكتابات والمعاراك الأدبية التي نقرأ شيئًا عنها في أدب العصر الفلكتوري وحتي ما قبل هذا العصر هو عصر جنون في كل شيء بقدر جنونه في النهضة بقدر جنونه في الأدب الذي يمثل تلك الحقبة ذات القرن الواحدو وقد ساهم أمثال أوسكار في سبر أغوارها وكشف تفاصيلها كثلما تناول "جوروج أورويل" في الكثير من نقده في كتابه (لماذا أكتب) ولكن بنظرة متحفظة وذلك لطابعه المتعالي رغم عكس ما يظهر في كتاباته!، ويبدو أنه مزاجة الفرد الإنجليزي مثال صارخ في الرواية البريطانية والإيرلنيدية خصوصًا.(5)المواجهة : نـهاية الـعقد. نتانة الجسد يهربخارج إطـار اللـوحة. يأبى البـقـاء أكـثر منذلك. غادرته كـل حياته الماضية. هاهو الآن يعيش أكثر من حياة لكنه يخسر أكثر. كانالشيطان قد خسر جولة والإنسان قد سقط....المعارك لا تقبل خاسران أو منتصران رغم إيماني بأن كلا طرفيها خاسران. لكن الشيطان دومًا يكسب جولاته الأولى. الصورة التي أبدع فيها أوسكار كانت الفصول الأخيرة التي يبدأ فيها الإنسان دوريان من التفلت من هنري وأصبح شيطان نفسه. في إشارة على قدرة المرء أن يخلق شيطانه الذي يمثل مستغنيًا عن أي شيطانٍ آخر.ـــــــــــــــــــــــــــــأخيرًا وإختصارًاهذه رائعة أوسكار قصة دوريان الإنجليزي الذي يرسمه فنان في بروتريه فيعجب بصورته ويتمنى أن يبقى شابًا لا يشيخ فيعقد صفقة مع الشيطان فيتم له ويبقى شابًا لا يتقدم عمره، وبالمقابل اللوحة من تشيخ وتظهر عيلها التغضنات والتجاعيد عطفًا على الآثام والشر الذي تفرزه تصرفات دوريان، وكان حتمًا عليه أن يواجهها وينتهي كل شيء، وهذا ليس حرقًا للأحداث فهذه رواية روعتها في تفاصيلها وحوارتها أكثر من حبكتها.ـــــــــــــــــــــــفاصلة أولى :هاري تخفيف "هنري" كان هو الشيطان الأكبر – مع حفظ الحقوق لعقلية الكراهية الإيرانية – في هذا النص الإبداعي، ولا أعلم هل كان أوسكار وايلد متدتينًا؟.. على الأقل هل كان يذهب كل أحد للكنيسة كالمسلمين الذين يعرفون الدين يوم الجمعة!!.. كان هنري الشيطان الآخر خارج حدود اللوحة وخارج عقلية دوريان. كان هنري الشيطان الذي أحاط بدوريان من الخارج ثم عندما وقع تركه.لم يكن أوسكار مصلحًا دون شك – لكنه كان يتذرغ دومًا بالتبرير من يقرأ بعض أعماله وشيءٌ من سيرته سيجد عنصر دفع التهم حاضرٌ في كل أعماله (صورة دوريان روايته الوحيدة) وكذلك حتى في حياته الشخصية. يقع في الذنب / الخطيئة – وفق عقلية القرن التاسع عشر ميلادي – ثم يبدأ في التبرير ونفض الإثم عنه.أوسكار كان يمثل معادلة الخير والشر وثمن كلاهما في الحياة. لذا تأتي أعماله (عند القراءة المتأنية) أشبه بصراع بين قابيل وهابيل بين الشيطان والإنسان. لذا كرؤية أخيرة يبدو لي أن أوسكار هو هنري وهو دوريان وهو الفنان، وإن كان هو نفسع يُصرّح عن طبيعة أعماله بالمجمل إنها ثورة كليبان وآريل كما يتصوّر ثورة القرن التاسع عشر على الأدب الواقي والخيالي.دون شك كان أوسكار يحاول جاهدًا من خلال قصائده وروياته الدفاع عن شذوذه الجنسي مع الرجال (أصلًا من لمن شفت صورة سيقانه لابس هيلا هوب والجزمة كولي هان فلات نسائي وأنا غاسل يدي منه) وحتى بعد خروجه من السجن بسبب قضايا أخلاقية – شذوذه – عاد من جديد لممارسة رذائله حتي توفي صغيرًا دون الخمسين، ولا نغفل عن تجريم هذه الأفعلا في تلك الحقبة الماضية من القرن التاسع عشر في كثير من بلدان أوروباهذه صورته من صديقه الحميمي الذي أشتهر بعلاقاته الجنسية معهــــــــــــــــــــفاصلة ثانية:نسخة ترجمة لويس عوض (دار الخيال) من أعظم الترجمات لكن تنقصها عن النسخة الإنجليزية الأصل مقدمة أوسكار وايلد عن الفن وعن هذه الرواية وهي غاية في الروعة. ـــــــــــــــــــفاصلة ثالثة :أنظر فيلم :The Picture of Dorian Gray : 1945 / George Henry SandersDorian Gray : 2009 / Ben Barnes , Colin Firth

  • Fabian
    2018-09-23 04:33

    Perfect, exquisite, everything that was promised to you. This one has quite a high degree of FOLLOW THROUGH. "Gray" is majestic, about the superficial love for oneself. It poses many questions, and as a book of ideas, perhaps the most innovatory in the latter part of the 19th century of them all, it is exactly what a reader wants. Absolute flawlessness, like the young Dorian himself. It's ESSENTIAL. Indeed, the pinnacle of Gay Lit. Comes to us in the rare tradition of too-good-to-be-true, actually-lives-up-to-the-hype literature canon.The dialogue is rife with quotable lines... indeed Wilde succeeds in wit-- more so in the existential/anarchistic/dandy lines which are pretty much music to the ear. The quaint descriptions themselves are embedded with sadness--the pace & the story... You really couldn't possibly ask for anything else.

  • Jason
    2018-09-25 07:35

    I am not sure whether this novel is so perfect I should wish Wilde had written more, or whether this novel is so perfect I should be grateful it stands alone.Wilde was an aesthete? This is a work of aestheticism? Hardly. The Picture of Dorian Gray is a gripping and sincere morality tale, told with beauty, and about beauty, but ultimately driven by the quasi-Gothic nightmare that rests beneath all that is beautiful in the book and all that is said about the pursuit of beauty by its primary characters.Wilde's writing is beautiful. Anything of beauty within the mise en scène is captured by Wilde and depicted with beauty. Dorian Gray is beauty in human form. His friend Basil Hallward, a painter, sees Dorian's beauty and is driven to portray it on canvas. Per Dorian's wish, he will remain beautiful, and Basil's portrait will bear the ravages of his soul. Basil's homoerotic fascination with Dorian, and its expression in his portrait of Dorian, will unwittingly lead to tragedy. Through Basil, Dorian befriends Lord Henry Wotton, who impresses upon Dorian the ideal of beauty. And, beyond that, the joy of beauty. Of seeking out that which pleases the senses. Of hedonism. A means of existence Dorian takes at its purest. Hedonism regardless the price. Personal pleasure above all else. Eventually the cost of such a life, and the sins Dorian commits in the name of it, come grossly to light, in what is in many ways the simplest of tales of right and wrong.Why is the novel so good if it's, arguably, so simple? Several reasons. Dorian's wish is not a foreign concept to men of any age. Lord Wotton's philosophy is captivating and, in many ways, persuasive. Beauty pleases man. All man has by way of understanding the world is his senses. All that triggers them and satisfies them (or more) is the best man can take from the world. Wilde knows. When (and when not) feeding the reader a compelling philosophy of beauty, he feeds the reader via the beauty of his prose. Quite literally, Wilde's writing pleases the senses. Multiple senses, in fact. The eye in its words. But more than the eye, as Wilde's eye, and his treatment of the world within the novel, reaches beyond it.That the beauty of the writing is on par with the views on aesthetics put forth in the novel as a counterbalance to its moral substance makes this a novel only Wilde could have written. There may be better prose in Anglo-American fiction (or not). No such prose, however, is as striking and of such calculated elegance and allure as Wilde's. The novel's abounding beauty provides the force that animates its theme of false beauty. That abounding beauty is Wilde's particular gift, and the heart of one of the best novels in the Anglo-American canon.

  • Leo .
    2018-09-30 00:52

    Great story. Imagine being immortal. Wow! To still be around after hundreds of years. One thing is true, you would know what really happened in the past. Let's face it you would have witnessed something first hand. And today you would read the modern history books and maybe, just maybe...Lol!All history is just what it means. His. Story. History was predominantly written by men. Left brain and in a draconian way. History to me, whomever wrote it, is theory, opinion and conjecture. How one perceives history is down to the individual. One does not know what happened if one was not there to witness it. Yes it can be read in a book but, who wrote it? There are conflicting views of history in all books. Different cultures have differing stories of how events happened. Who knows which is telling the truth? Normally the victors would write whatever they wanted, who could argue? It is only his story after all. That is all well and good but, when it is taught in schools and becomes the mainstream then any other debate that says other wise is ridiculed, attacked and (excommunicated) pushed to one side as pseudoscience. It goes against the grain. Information has to stay linear in a civilized society. It has to be taught in schools and universities so the pupils can graduate, owe the state bucket loads of money, and become good civil servants and carry on with the flow of information they have learned, and repeat it over and over. And teach it to the next generation, and the next. All going the right way. The official way. That is what information is. IN. FORMATION. Linear. Ordered. Left brain. Masculine.My story is a mystery, unless I tell somebody else, then it becomes His Story. It is still just a story after all. I always wondered if the word Heresy derives from Her Say, like a woman's view point. It makes sense considering women were persecuted and not allowed to speak back then. The church was a male dominance over the female. How times have changed. Women were not allowed to do anything. They were basically property. There is a reason why the male orientated church suppressed the female, because they are aware that women are the creative of the two genders. The sacred feminine. This is why our history and the world is so riddled with war and violence. Having said that, it is more a spiritual trait. Take Oscar Wilde. He had the more feminine spirit inside of him and he was persecuted for being gay. He was a man but he had the creative essence of the female.🐯👍Oscar Wilde, he was a gentle man, a creative mindA genius, a story teller, great prose, he left behindPersecuted, hounded, sentenced, for being gayA masterpiece, The Picture Of Dorian GrayHow times have moved on! One might sayHow ironic, how this brilliant mind, is revered and celebrated today. 👍🐯

  • Jonathan Ashleigh
    2018-09-19 07:53

    If no one wrote a novel after this one: it would be the greatest story ever told and I would be ok with that.

  • Councillor
    2018-10-09 06:43

    What would you do to gain eternal youth, to be beautiful and young and highly respected forever and ever? In the first instance, you should think long and longer about such a yearning, because in the end, it is not external beauty which counts ... it is the beauty of your soul. A lesson Dorian Gray has to learn in one of the most gruesome ways you could imagine."The Picture of Dorian Gray" is an absolute masterpiece, which is a compliment I rarely pay a book. Oscar Wilde can easily be considered to be a genius, which is why I included a few whole bunch of interesting quotes at the end of the review which provoke the reader to think about the story. The plot itself is probably well-known: the young man longing for eternal youth and paying a horrible price for his desires. In the context of modern literature, Wilde's novel is considered to be a classic and therefore often connected with long-winded plots lacking tension and pace. Both tension and pace are aspects you might be surprised to find in this novel. Not only is the writing eloquent and elegant, but also inciting you to continue reading page for page for page.Authors like Charles Dickens or Alexandre Dumas come to mind when talking of elongated novels with a lot of details which only add to atmosphere, not to plot itself, and Oscar Wilde could certainly have followed their paths ... but he didn't. Instead, he was able to create atmosphere out of his plot elements, to create plot twists out of the novel's atmosphere, to draw breathing characters and let them decide where the story heads. And he did so on a comparatively small amount of pages; not a single word felt redundant or out of place.It is nearly impossible to talk of this novel without revealing some of the plot elements (a lot of which surprised me out of nowhere and had me on the edge of my seat - it may be surprising to admit, but this classic novel was way more suspenseful than an Agatha Christie novel or a James Bond spy thriller - at least in comparison to those I have read). A lot of different characters were introduced during the course of the story: Basil Hallward, the painter of the portrait and infatuated with Dorian; Henry Wotton, an imperious aristocrat and friend of both Basil and Dorian; Sibyl Vane, a singer and actress Dorian falls in love with; James Vane, Sibyl's brother; and others among them. None of them appeared to be likeable (although I did feel sympathy for Basil), but they appeared to be realistic with their all too human longings and wrong decisions.Here follows a compilation of quotes I bookmarked during my reading experience because of their interesting background, their depth or the simple beauty of their words:(And yes, I did bookmark nearly half the book.)"[f]or there is only one thing in the world worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about.""Because to influence a person is to give him one's own soul. He does not think his natural thoughts, or burn with his natural passions. His virtues are not real to him. His sins, if there are such things as sins, are borrowed. He becomes an echo of some one else's music, an actor of a part that has not been written for him. The aim of life is self-development. To realize one's nature perfectly - that is what each of us is here for.""The only way to get rid of temptation is to yield to it.""Nothing can cure the soul but the senses, just as nothing can cure the senses but the soul.""You know more than you think you know, just as you know less than you want to know.""Nowadays people know the price of everything and the value of nothing.""Young men want to be faithful, and are not; old men want to be faithless, and cannot.""Experience was of no ethical value. It was merely the name men gave to their mistakes.""We are not sent into the world to air our moral prejudices. I never take any notice of what common people say, and I never interfere with what charming people do. If a personality fascinates me, whatever mode of expression that personality selects is absolutely delightful to me.""Pleasure is Nature's test, her sign of approval. When we are happy, we are always good, but when we are good, we are not always happy.""[w]e live in an age when unnecessary things are our only necessities;""There is a luxury in self-reproach. When we blame ourselves, we feel that no one else has a right to blame us. It is the confession, not the priest, that gives us absolution.""The more he knew, the more he desired to know. He had mad hungers that grew more ravenous as he fed them.""[n]o theory of life seemed to him to be of any importance compared with life itself.""Sin is a thing that writes itself across a man's face. It cannot be concealed.""Scepticism is the beginning of faith.""In the common world of fact the wicked were not punished, nor the good rewarded.""As for omens, there is no such thing as an omen. Destiny does not send us heralds. She is too wise or too cruel for that.""I have no terror of death. It is the coming of death that terrifies me. Its monstrous wings seem to wheel in the leaden air around me.""Death is the only thing that ever terrifies me. I hate it.""Why?" said the younger man wearily."Because," said Lord Henry, [...] "one can survive everything nowadays except that.""The tragedy of old age is not that one is old, but that one is young."

  • فهد الفهد
    2018-09-30 00:42

    صورة دوريان جراي لو طلب مني إعداد قائمة بأهم الكتب التي قرأتها في حياتي، ستكون رائعة أوسكار وايلد على رأس القائمة، ومهما صغرت قائمتي، ومهما تطايرت منها العناوين، ستبقى (صورة دوريان جراي) لأنها رواية عبقرية كتبها فنان عملاق. قرأت هذه الرواية في مراهقتي، نسخة مختصرة منها بالأصح وأبهرتني، أبهرتني فلسفتها، أبهرتني تحولاتها، وها أنا بعد أعوام طويلة أعود لأقرأ نسخة كاملة منها، ومع ذلك لا يتشتت الانبهار ولا يخفت جمال النص ولا قوته. دوريان جراي شاب وسيم، فاتن، بريء، يرسم له صديقه الفنان لوحة مذهلة، تلتقط تلك اللوحة بشكل ما روح دوريان، هكذا كل التغيرات التي ستجري عليه، كل القسوة، والوحشية، كل الفجور الذي سينغمس فيه لاحقاً، لن ينعكس على ملامحه البريئة الطفولية، سيحتفظ دوريان جراي بوجهه الطفولي، وحدها اللوحة التي سيخفيها دوريان في علية منزله عن الناس، وحدها اللوحة ستحمل خطاياه، وستذكره دائماً إلى أي درك وصل، سيحفر الزمن والفجور خطوطه على اللوحة، وسيبقى وجه دوريان صافياً، جميلاً، خادعاً. إلى جوار شخصية دوريان وقصته المذهلة، تبرز شخصية اللورد هنري ويتون، بفلسفته وذكائه وسخريته، تبدو لي شخصية هنري مجرد ستار لأوسكار وايلد، لقد كان هنري بكلامه وبكتاب ما أعاره لدوريان جراي أول معول هوى على براءة دوريان فحطمها، هكذا سيخوض دوريان جراي في العوالم السفلية، هكذا ستسوء سمعته وسيعرف في الأوساط الاجتماعية بأنه فاجر، وسيتحدث الكثيرون عنه، ولكن كل الأحاديث ستتبدد وتزول حالما تقع العيون عليه، كيف يصح أن يصدر كل ذلك الفجور، كيف يصح أن تنسب كل تلك الأفعال إلى هذا الطفل الغر؟! كيف تمضي الأعوام ولا يتغير شيء في دوريان جراي؟ يرقد الجواب في علية منزل دوريان، في لوحة مستورة، حيث صورة رجل عجوز فاجر، تحمل ملامحه كل آثامه. نهاية الرواية حكاية أخرى، يمكن لي تصنيفها كأحد أروع النهايات إطلاقاً، لا يوازيها في ذاكرتي إلا نهايتي (ابنة الحظ) لايزابيل الليندي و(لورد الذباب) لوليم غولدينغ.