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The importance of being Earnest- Love, Marriage and Romance

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Sally Clarke

on 22 October 2012

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Transcript of The importance of being Earnest- Love, Marriage and Romance

Love, Marriage and Romance Wilde makes it's very difficult for the reader to distinguish romance from real love. Algernon, Jack, Cecily and Gwendolen all define love differently. 'It is very romantic to be in love', this quote from Algernon is spoke early on in the play, inspite Algernon's attitudes towards marriage he is admitting here that as long as it 'true love' then it's acceptable to be classed as 'pleasure' rather than 'business'. He almost says this as if it's a rare quality to find love, this relates to the historical background as in the Victorian era Love was an unimportant factor and most marriages were arranged by the parents. Jack is very sincere with love as he has always said that he was 'in love with Gwendolen', although he does create a false brother he openly admits it to Gwendolen further on in the play. Gwendolen forgives him later which suggest Gwendolen too has real feelings for Jack. 'Oh pleasure, pleasure', this phrase shows that Jack refers to marriage as 'pleasure' rather 'business' unlike Algernon. This does go against the typical Victorian attitude towards marriage as they would find it a occupation rather than an aspiration. Ironically Cecily has arranged her own marriage, which is very uncommon for the Victorian period. She is very ahead of her time which relates to the literature aspect as in the Victorian era most novels Marriage is mocked by Algernon
'I call that business'
It is very important for a Victorian women to have protection with money
'What is your income' The language is full of elegance and mild criticisms. At first glance they the play is full of puns- but really each one becomes a paradox throughout the play.
'my ideal has always been to love someone of the name of Ernest', this phrase stated by Gwendolen shows that her love is conditional, and that she is mixing up real love from idealistic romances of books.
LANGUAGE Love throughout the play relates to the historical aspects of the Victorian era as it relies mostly on parental approval. In the voictorian era daughters would only marry who their parents say is suitable, they would normally be able to marry someone in the same class or a higher class, never below their class. Historical 'I have dared to love you widly, passionately, devotedly, hopelessly' this quote shows Wilde's mockery of the Victorian view. It would of been seen as inappropriate for a man and women to express themselves in this manner. Normally a man could not e left alone with a single women until they were married. This shows how comical Wilde makes the play as Algernon and Cecily express themselves in such a manner that would be seen as foolishness in the era. Literature
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