Presentation on theme: "Victorian Age. Victorian Era The Victorian era is generally agreed to stretch through the reign of Queen Victoria (1837-1901). It was a tremendously exciting."— Presentation transcript:
Victorian Era The Victorian era is generally agreed to stretch through the reign of Queen Victoria (1837-1901). It was a tremendously exciting period when many artistic styles, literary schools, as well as, social, political and religious movements flourished. It was a time of prosperity, broad imperial expansion, and great political reform. It was also a time, which today we associate with "prudishness" and "repression". Without a doubt, it was an extraordinarily complex age, that has sometimes been called the Second English Renaissance. It is, however, also the beginning of Modern Times. http://www.victoriaspast.com/FrontPorch/victorianera.htm
Victorian Women A lady should be quiet in her manners, natural and unassuming in her language, careful to wound no one’s feelings, but giving generously and freely from the treasures of her pure mind to her friends. Scorning no one openly, she should feel gentle pity for the unfortunate, the inferior and the ignorant, at the same time carrying herself with an innocence and single heartedness which disarms ill nature, and wins respect and love from all. Etiquette of dress for the proper lady. The full dinner dress for guests admits of great splendor. It may be of any thick texture of silk or velvet for winter or light rich goods for summer, and should be long and sweeping. The fan should be perfect in its way, and the gloves should be quite fresh. Diamonds are used in broaches, pendants, earrings and bracelets. All the light neutral tints, and black, dark blue, purple, dark green, garnet, brown and fawn are suited for dinner wear. http://www.victorianstation.com/lifestylemenu.htm
Victorian Men He acts kindly from the impulse of his kind heart. He is brave, because, with a conscience void of offence, he has nothing to fear. He is never embarrassed, for he respects himself and is profoundly conscious of right intentions.. He opposes without bitterness and yields without admitting defeat. He is never arrogant, never weak. He bears himself with dignity, but never haughtily. To superiors he is respectful without servility; to equals courteous; to inferiors’ kind. He carries himself with grace in all places, is easy but never familiar, genteel without affection. He unites gentleness of manner with firmness of mind. He commands with mild authority, and asks favors with grace and assurance.
Behavior of a Lady out in public The true lady walks the street, wrapped in a mantle of proper reserve, so impenetrable that insult and coarse familiarity shrink from her, while she, at all times, carries with her a congenial atmosphere which attracts all, and puts all at their ease A lady walks quietly through the streets, seeing and hearing nothing that she ought not to, recognizing acquaintances with a courteous bow, and friends with words of greeting. She is always unobtrusive, never talks loudly, or laughs boisterously, or does anything to attract the attention of the passers-by. She walks along in her own quiet, lady-like way, and by her preoccupation is secure from any annoyance. A true lady in the street, as in the parlor is modest, discreet, kind and obliging. It is proper that the lady should first recognize the gentleman. A gentleman will never fail to bow in return to a lady; but a lady may not feel at liberty to return a gentleman’s bow, which places him in a rather unpleasant position. Therefore, a lady should give the first smile or bow. She must refrain, at all times, from using the gentleman’s Christian name.
Behavior of a gentleman out in public A real gentleman never swears or talks uproariously. He should never fail to raise his hat politely to an acquaintance of either sex. If he should bump into someone or step upon a lady’s dress he must "beg their pardon", and at no time should he lose his temper nor attract attention by excited conversation. It is proper to offer a lady his arm, particularly in the evening and it should always be the right arm. People passing should observe the law of "turn to the right" and in this way the lady would not be jostled. It is always proper for a gentleman walking alone to give the lady or a gentleman with a lady, the inside of the walk.
Women’s Rights Women were denied the right to vote or hold political office throughout the period, but gradually won significant rights such as custody of minor children and the ownership of property in marriage. By the end of Victoria’s reign, women could take degrees at twelve universities. Hundreds of thousands of working- class women labored at factory jobs under appalling conditions, and many were driven into prostitution. While John Stuart Mill argued that the “nature of women” was an artificial thing, most male authors preferred to claim that women had a special nature fitting them for domestic duties. http://www.wwnorton.com/college/english/nael/victorian/review/summary.htm#5
Oscar Wilde Born 1854 in Dublin Received undergraduate education at Trinity College in Dublin Was able to attend college because his father was a widely known surgeon in Dublin Went on to grad school in Oxford- Magdalen College in 1874 1884- married Constance Lloyd and by 1886 had two sons 1889 wrote many plays and poetry; had written Picture of Dorian Gray- most widely acclaimed novel 1895- wrote The Importance of Being Earnest; it was to premiered on Feb 14, 1895
Wilde had been having an affair with Lord Alfred Douglas who he had fallen deeply in love with; Douglas’s father, the Marquess of Queensbury was against his son’s relationship with Wilde Marquess went to Wilde’s premier with the intent of calling him out in front of the audience; he was banned from the door as Wilde had heard of his intent Instead, Marquess went to Wilde’s club and left a note reading “Oscar Wilde Posing as Somdomite”—he spelled it wrong!!!
Wilde had charges brought against Marquess for libel They went to trial where the defense attorney gathered houseboys who testified to Wilde’s acts of homosexuality; the charges were dropped against the Marquess of Queensbury The judge turned around to charge Wilde with homosexuality as it was illegal in England at the time Up until1828, homosexuality was a crime punishable by death; after that it was just a convictable offense Wilde’s first trial ended in a hung jury; the second ended with his conviction He was sentenced to two years in a hard labor prison where he walked on a treadmill for six hours per day He was released in 1897; moved to France and died there in 1900 The Importance of Being Earnest closed within 100 days because of all the negative publicity surrounding Wilde at the time
The Importance of Being Earnest Wilde’s plays offered audiences a fresh contrast to the somber tones of the Victorian dramas that emphasized proper manners and rigid morals. He was anything by rigid and went against the norms of traditional Victorian society.
Things to remember Typically, fashionable society in the 19 th century placed great importance on family background, rank, financial status, manners and morals. The Importance of Being Earnest is a satirical look at values and concerns of the segment of society that Wilde once called “the beautiful people.” The characters are usually stereotypes, or simplified examples of different traits or qualities.
Characters: John/Jack Worthing: Justice of the Peace Algernon Moncrieff:Gwendolyn’s cousin Rev. Canon Chasuble:“Friend” to Miss Prism Merriman:A butler Lane:A manservant Lady Bracknell:Mother to Gwendolyn; aunt to Algernon Gwendolen Fairfax:Mr. Worthing’s love interest Cecily Cardew:Mr. Moncrief’s love interest; ward to Mr. Worthing Miss Prism:A Governess/Tutor to Cecily
As you read What message is the author conveying about: Aristocracy Love Marriage Men Women Manners Literary Works Also, record who says the following aphorisms in each act. It should give you some insight to the above ideas.