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

Narcissistic Theme in Oscar Wilde's The Picture of Dorian Gray

Page
  1. 1
    1
  2. 2
    2
  • Essay length: 777 words
  • Submitted: 24/07/2008
Share this essay:
International Baccalaureate Languages

The first 200 words of this essay...

Zack Lindahl

Beauty at Any Cost: The Narcissistic Theme in The Picture of Dorian Gray

There are multiple themes within Oscar Wilde's The Picture of Dorian Gray. One of these is very central in the novel, and that is the trait of self-love, narcissism. The whole novel is built around Dorian Gray's physical beauty, and his indulgence of it. There are numerous references and hints of narcissism, often comparing Dorian to Narcissus himself, or Dorian's selfish behavior which at times are classical for the psychological condition of extreme narcissism. The Picture of Dorian Gray tells a story, that at times bears a resemblance to ancient tales of narcissistic behavior, and Oscar Wilde consciously portrays it different aspects throughout the novel.

There are several instances in the first part of the novel that illuminates the theme of narcissism. In the very first chapter, Dorian Gray utters his fervent wish for eternal youth. He does this as he sees the picture of himself that Basil Hallward has painted, and "[t]he sense of his own beauty came on him like a revelation" (28). This is very similar to when Narcissus himself looked down on his own reflection

Read more
The above preview is unformatted text

Found what you're looking for?

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

  • "
    Great educational tool, really useful and really helps teach students about how to write and structure their coursework.
    "
    George Boustred English, Maths, Science, Resistant Materials, History, Music. GCSE Student
  • "
    I believe that www.markedbyteachers.com provides a resource which most students would find highly beneficial.
    "
    John Plowright. Teacher. Repton School. Derbyshire.

Marked by a teacher

This essay has been marked by one of our great teachers. You can read the full teachers notes when you download the essay.

Peer reviewed

This essay has been reviewed by one of our specialist student essay reviewing squad. Read the full review on the essay page.

Peer reviewed

This essay has been reviewed by one of our specialist student essay reviewing squad. Read the full review under the essay preview on this page.