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The Importance of Being Earnest

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abigail stillwell

on 23 January 2014

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Transcript of The Importance of Being Earnest

The Importance of Being Earnest
Surface Views
John "Jack" Worthing:
Productive member of
Jack in the country and
Ernest in town
Guardian to Cecily
In love with Gwendolen
Friends with Algernon
Moral Codes
Jack/Ernest originates with a strong moral code but loses his values of being honest and truthful when he lies to Gwen about his identity.

Algy leads an indulgent life, moving from one pleasure to the next evading his debts and responsibilities.
Strengths and Fatal Flaws

Dynamic because he discovers his true identity
Transforms when he discovers the importance of living earnestly with Gwendolen.

Major Character
Dynamic because he intentionally ends the lie about Bunbury and thus decides to live truthfully and passionately with Cecily, he discovers the importance of being earnest.

Purpose and Contributions of the Characters
The author portrays Jack as a combination of both a friend and a father figure. This is shown throughout his relationships with Algy and Cecily. Since he is a little socially awkward, people tend to feel sympathetic towards him, all except Lady Bracknell. Jack explores the theme of identity, and how it might lie in our parentage, and the great significance our names can hold. Jack explains why people lie for love. He later learns the importance of being genuine and inspires others to do the same.
Concluding the Characters
Jack treads water by going against his honest moral standards and uses deception in obtaining his love. Jack shows how people are desperate to be loved and can be willing to do anything to achieve it. Because of the absence of a parental figure in his past, he can make people uneasy. He must overcome this by being genuine. Jack neither controls his fate or gets the luck of the draw. For example he left the marriage choice up to Lady Bracknell, but in such a way that he knew the outcome.
The final journey to Jack and Algy's full reformation is when they discovers the true potential of Ernest and the power of living Earnestly.
Algernon Moncrieff:
Kind of a jerk
Con man
Loaded with debt
Nephew to Lady Bracknell
Cousin to Gwendolen
Infatuated with Cecily

The author portrays Algy as an arrogant man whom no one sympathizes for because he's up to his ears in debt, yet serves as comic relief. He represents the greed and luxury in the people of his class and demonstrates that being sincere is better than material wealth. Algy also conforms to the steryotypical single me of the era and shows how it is possible for men to break that image. He is encorporated into the theme by showingthat people can change and are capable of love, sincerity, and the ablility to empower.
The author shows in Algy that people are not stuck in their ways, and may not be inherently good. Algy demonstrates that people crave acceptance and that love has the ability to empower people. The author uses him to also show that greed and lies make up a thin facade that often falls apart. Algy is able to control his fate- he is the one that changes his name and uses others to manipulate the outcome to benefit him.
Full transcript