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Intentions-the Art of Wilde’s Egotism

Author XiangZuoZuo
Tutor ChenLiSha
School Beijing Forestry University
Course English Language and Literature
Keywords Egotism Self-actualization Theory Intentions "The Critic as Artist" "The Decay of Lying" "The Truth of Masks" and "Pen, Pencil, and Poison"
Type Master's thesis
Year 2011
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Oscar Wilde is a legendary man of letters in late nineteenth century Victorian Age. He is remembered by later generations as an aesthete dandy, a genius writing in various literary forms such as poetry, fiction, drama, critical essays, and a trailed homosexual. Falling from the peak of success and glory into the abyss of disgrace and imprisonment overnight, the life of Oscar Wilde is as dramatic as his dramas.Early critics of Wilde failed to pay much attention to Wilde’s literary criticism. Not until the late twenties century has the value of his literary criticism been aware of. In other words, study on Wilde’s literary criticism is comparatively new. We notice that in the study of Wilde’s intellectual thought, few have carried out a systematic research in Wilde’s egotism although all Wilde’s critics agree that he has a particular personality. Therefore, this thesis tries to explore the connotation of Wilde’s egotism and its demonstration in Wilde’s life and art.We believe that egotism is a doctrine of viewing self-realization as the utmost goal of life. Wilde is an egotist who fully expresses his egotism in art and life. Applying Abraham Maslow’s self-actualizing theory as guidance, we attempts to reveal Wilde’s egotism demonstrated in his four critical essays in Intentions, that is, in "The Critic as Artist", "The Decay of Lying", "The Truth of Masks" and "Pen, Pencil, and Poison"

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