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The Importance of Being Earnest

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Introduction

A protagonist is described as the main character in the story. The story line revolves around this one character and the events in his/ her life. In the Importance of Being Earnest, Jack Worthing is the protagonist of the play because it is his character that dominates the narrative. His pursuit to marry Gwendolen, and the conflicts and struggles he goes up against to reach his ultimate goal, are traits which develop his character into being the protagonist. For a character to take on the role of protagonist, there always needs to be conflict. Jack Worthing's first conflict is getting the approval to marry Gwendolen from her mother, Lady Bracknell. In the beginning of the story when Jack, also referred to as Ernest, proposes to Gwendolen, but is denied the ability to marry Gwendolen until he has passed Lady Bracknell's series of tests; what she sees as a suitable husband for her daughter. This is shown through her statement of: "I fell bound to tell you that you are not on my list of eligible young men...however, I am quite ready to enter your name should your answers be what a really affectionate mother acquires" (Wilde,1438). ...read more.

Middle

He Lead an exciting life as a bachelor and was able to be free of his responsibility under the name of Jack. But when he wanted to pursue Gwendolen, he wanted to put an end to his charades and live a life of truth with her. He no longer wanted to lead a double life. As a result of the leading a double life, Jack's character and multiple identities created sub plots with other characters, somehow intertwining his life into their life stories. If it was not for Jack's double life, it would have never sparked the curiosity of Algernon, who posed as the made-up 'Ernest', to want to meet "little Cecily", the name on the "Uncle Jack's" cigarette case. Nor would it have caused Cecily to fall in love with someone the name of Ernest, rather she fell in love with the man that Jack made up, this being his sick brother Ernest. "Parker describes the protagonist as a character in the play who attains his goals through 'elaborate deception' to 'satisfy their impulses'. ...read more.

Conclusion

He figured out who is parents were and he received Gwendolen's hand in marriage, after finding out he truly is an Ernest. Oscar Wilde develops the character of Jack Worthing finally known as Ernest John Worthing as the main character of the play. The plot, conflict, and characters all revolved around Jack. Through his double life, the importance of being Ernest, and his struggles to overcome his now mother in law's grasp of her daughter; has centered jack as being the protagonist. It is evident in the play that Jack is the protagonist because most, if not all of story and sub-plots involve or are caused because of him in some factor. His imaginary lifestyle although full of lies and deceit, created an ultimate truth and coupled new loves together, resulting in a fresh and new life with Gwendolen. In "The Importance of Being Earnest", Jack Worthing is the protagonist of the play because it is his character that dominates the narrative. His pursuit to marry Gwendolen, and the conflicts and struggles he goes up against to reach his ultimate goal, are traits which develop his character into being the protagonist. ...read more.

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