• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

The Importance of Being Earnest - Oscar Wilde.

Extracts from this document...


The Importance of Being Earnest - Oscar Wilde We may be experiencing an Oscar Wilde resurgence; not quite as dramatic as the flurry of Jane Austen inspired films of the nineties, but something is going on. Wilde's farce of social position and courtship revolves around two friends who secretly share a tendency to use deception to avoid boredom. Jack Worthing is known to his London friends as Ernest, not Jack. Jack has a country estate where his ward Cecily Cardew and her governess, Miss Letitia Prism, reside. When they become tiresome, Jack claims that his younger, troublesome brother, Ernest, as gotten himself into yet another dreadful scrape and requires his aid in town. When in London, Jack simply assumes the identity of Ernest. Algernon Moncrieff - Algy to his friends - has invented a fictional character of his own, an invaluable invalid named Bunbury. Whenever Algy wishes to escape a particularly unwelcome invitation, he claims to have been called to his sickly friend's side in the country. ...read more.


So despite his having an eight thousand pound annual income (a small fortune one hundred years ago) and a fifteen hundred acre country estate, he is found totally unsuitable. But all is not lost; Gwendolyn sneaks back into Algy's flat and gets Jack's, uh... Ernest's Hertfordshire country address. So does Algy, who's intrigued by the eighteen-year-old ward who may be found there, and wishes to delve further into "Ernest's" private life. Our cast converge on Jack's country estate (by none other then hot-air ballon), where Algy assumes the role of Jack's brother Ernest, and where Gwendolyn impulsively follows by motor car with her mother in hot pursuit. Hilarity ensures... In an amusingly nonsensical afternoon, Algy becomes engaged to Cecily. In the midst of confusion the two love-struck women bicker over being engaged to the same man. To make matters worse Lady Bracknell pushes her way into the proceedings, and coincidences abound. The plot may be silly, improbable but it's a tad droll. ...read more.


I would have to say, that it is unnecessary and could quite possibly ruin it for some people. One thing that leaves me questioning, is the actual point of "the importance of being earnest", it has no moral, no message, there is nothing what so ever to be learnt from it. In November 2000, the hundredth anniversary of Oscar Wilde's death was commemorated, so his dramatic form was not the screenplay, it was the stage play. Those origins are revealed here, beyond the book-ended and unnecessary curtains. There are few settings and the show is very wordy, but such words. Upon searching, I came across a sentence stating that during that era, earnest meant gay, such a revelation , knowing Wilde's sexuality adds certain depth. Wilde was a master of the English language, able to twist the most polite exchange into the subtlest of disparaging remarks. When a woefully off-key Algy asks his butler, "Did you hear what I was singing, Lane?" The ever so proper servant instantly replies, "I didn't think it polite to listen, Sir." Delightful dialog, delightfully played. Jeremy Chang ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Oscar Wilde section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Oscar Wilde essays

  1. The Importance of Being Earnest-" A trivial comedy for serious people".

    to find out suddenly that for all his life he has been speaking nothing but the truth.' Pg 362. These dramatic ironies create a very effective ending, as all the various conflicts and misunderstandings during the play are resolved. Throughout the play, Wilde uses paradoxes and epigrams to mock Victorian

  2. What makes the play ‘The Importance of Being Earnest’ funny?

    She is also very unsympathetic towards people and her uncaring remarks are quite funny. For example when Jack tells her that he has lost both his parents she replies "To lose one parent, Mr Worthing, may be regarded as a misfortune, to lose both looks like carelessness."

  1. The characters in the play are paired. Compare and contrast Jack and Algernon,

    Lady Bracknell and Miss Prism are both mature women. However, Lady Bracknell is a member of the so-called upper class, whereas Miss Prism is a member of the lower class (governess). Miss Prism is a character who is not in the centre of the story who becomes important in the

  2. How does 'The Picture of Dorian Gray' by Oscar Wilde use paradox to explore ...

    In this novel aestheticism is portrayed as a concept of beauty and is given great value but it has transient meanings which are different in every example. The central role of beauty in aesthetics can be seen itself as a paradox.

  1. oscar wilde

    To conclude, the nightingale sacrifice had no meaning. Ultimately, the blood she gave away to get the red rose ha no values at all, the rose for which Nightingale died was thrown out on the streets with boy not responding at all to get his love back but walks away with "What a silly thing love is".

  2. What sort of Society and Values does Wilde present inThe Importance Of Being Earnest?

    But she decides that that small problem can be easily altered. When Jack tells her that he was 'found' and in a handbag Lady Bracknell is quite horrified. The most famous line of the play is where she says 'A handbag?'

  1. Comparison Essay Between 'The Importance of Being Earnest' by Oscar Wilde and 'Pack of ...

    It is a very neighbourly place. However the culture of 'The Importance of Being Earnest,' is upper class and is set in wealthy households in both London and Hertfordshire. The historical context of each play is different as well. 'Pack of Lies, was based on true facts as during the

  2. Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray

    No-one has died to him, nothing has happened. He just wants to enjoy life and follow Lord Henry's advice to pursue pleasure. Lord Henry's influence has corrupted Dorian to a certain extent that he was willing to kill a dear friend.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work