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What are Wilde(TM)s dramatic purposes in his presentation of Mrs Allonby?

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Introduction

What are Wilde's dramatic purposes in his presentation of Mrs Allonby? Throughout the play Wilde uses many different techniques and themes in order to present the dramatic purpose of Mrs Allonby. The first way he does this is to emphasis her chosen role in the play as that of the female dandy, a role that is mirrored in a male sense by Lord Illingworth. The first example of this attitude comes near the beginning of the play when Lady Hunstanton comments on the beautiful state of the countryside however Mrs Allonby shows her admiration for the scenery but not the lifestyle that comes with it 'I feel sure that if I lived in the country for six months I should become so unsophisticated that no one would take the slightest notice of me' This comment is a typical example of the dramatic purpose of Mrs Allonby as it shows her classic arrogance and feeling of superiority as she is suggesting that living in the country is below her and is a demeaning suggestion. ...read more.

Middle

Mrs Allonby's dramatic purpose as a female dandy is shown once again later on in the play when in conversation she refers to a previous conversation with her counterpart Lord Illingworth about the conservatory 'Lord Illingworth told me this morning that there was an orchid there as beautiful as the seven deadly sins' This is a classic example of the clash of different personalities between Mrs Allonby and the other ladies as she sees this orchid as something appealing and is a symbol that typifies her personality in a dramatic way where as on the other hand Lady Hunstanton sees it as an imperfection and orders it to be removed which signifies her typical upper class personality as one who strives for perfection. Another of Mrs Allonby's dramatic purposes created by Wilde is to create conflict among the women at their social gathering which he creates to superb effect. Wilde gives subtle hints of the feeling of the other women throughout the book without allowing it to break out into full frontal confrontations 'Remarkable type Mrs Allonby She lets her clever tongue run ...read more.

Conclusion

She sees marriage as a weakness and prefers to see life as it comes and has a power over men that she exploits frequently throughout the play. When discussing with Lord Illingworth the possible consequences of him kissing Hester on the cheek Lady Allonby mentions marriage as if it is a punishment in the same breath as being slapped round the face 'Either marry you or strike you across the face with her glove' This view would not be as surprising as first thought to the audience if Mrs Allonby herself was not married to Ernest. Unsurprisingly Mrs Allonby's female dandy personality is reflected in this marriage as it is not one that she is committed whole heartedly to and to the outside eye it may even appear that she is not married at all. Overall Wilde uses all of these themes and techniques to create Mrs Allonby as a dramatic purpose throughout the play and he does this to great effect with the audience following her role in the play with great interest. Mrs Allonby's female dandy personality and attitude towards men and marriage are the main reasons for her dramatic role in the play. Alex Duncan ...read more.

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