The Role of Consciousness in
“Picture of Dorian Gray”
The picture of Dorian is a literary masterpiece, as it fully conveys the atmosphere of London aristocracy of the time, it contains a lot of brilliant aphorisms and raises issues that will never cease to be relevant. Wilde compares the problem of youth and beauty with vice and moral exhaustion.
The novel’s plot is based on the fact that Dorian Gray, has an angelic young beauty, and he sees the sense of his existence only in it. Dorian is chasing eternal youth and eternal pleasure and one day he pays a high price for it: he exchanges his soul to stay young for ever. His words to the artist Basil confirms this: “Oh, if it were only the other way! If the picture could change, and I could be always what I am now!” Dorian betrayed all kinds of temptations and taboos, he leads a life of vice, and his portrait assume all the consequences of such life. The picture is getting older, instead of Dorian. Beautiful portrait reflects a moral decay.
Oscar Wilde was able to portray the perfect external image, but rotten inside. All the ugliness of the Dorian’s soul was displayed in the portrait, while he kept an angelic form. The author shows how a person turns into a criminal, destroying his own soul. Wilde says that human life can only be controlled by conscience, even a drop that lives in each of us, and the person is alive for as long as he has conscience. Dorian had killed it, in other words, his spiritual death gave a rise to the physical. It seems that Oscar Wilde asks us: “What are we hiding under outer shell? Do we see our vices and do we fight them?” The author wants the reader to understand that there is no perfect beauty, consisting only of the outer shell. A person should necessarily have internal appeal, purity and fullness.
This is an excellent writing and I was forced to draw certain conclusions. After all, today’s world is cultivated with the importance of perfect outer shell, but mostly people forget about their inner beauty. Lots of people are cared about cute appearance, but in fact have a callous soul. People need to think about how not to kill own conscience, as you have to be in agreement with it, and only then it will be possible to achieve spiritual harmony.