"How can a woman be expected to be happy with a man who insists on treating her as if she were a perfectly normal human being?"

Happy birthday Oscar Wilde!

 

Oscar-Wilde

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Wilde (October 16, 1854—November 30, 1900) was an Irish author, playwright, poet, and journalist. He is perhaps best known for his only novel, The Picture of Dorian Gray (1890). He also wrote several successful plays, but became more notorious at the time for prosecuting his lover's father for libel, ultimately resulting in his own imprisonment.

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Wilde was born Oscar Fingal O'Flahertie Wills Wilde in Dublin, Ireland to Sir William Wilde and Lady Jane Francesca Wilde. His mother was a journalist and poet, and his father was a surgeon and writer. Wilde attended Portora Royal School, Trinity College, and finally Oxford. In 1878, he won the Newdigate Prize for his poem "Ravenna."

After he graduated, Wilde published Poems to little recognition. He also worked as an art reviewer, lecturing internationally. He became a supporter of the "Art for Art's Sake" movement.

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From 1887-1889, he worked as the editor of The Woman's World magazine. Wilde brought more seriousness to the magazine, shaping it to include articles on parenting, culture, and politics.

In 1888, he married Constance Lloyd, with whom he had two sons. He published The Happy Prince and Other Tales, fairy-stories written for his two sons. He also wrote the short stories Lord Arthur Savile's Crime and Other Stories and The House of Pomegranates around this time.

In 1890, Wilde published his first and only novel, The Picture of Dorian Gray. Rife with homoerotic overtones, the novel was not well-received in its Victorian context.

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Though Wilde was married to a woman, his greatest love affair was with Lord Alfred Douglas—or "Bosie."

Soon, Wilde began writing plays. His most successful plays were Lady Windermere's Fan (1892), A Woman of No Importance (1893), An Ideal Husband (1895), and The Importance of Being Earnest (1895).

In 1895, Wilde sued Douglas' father, the Marquess of Queensbury, for libel, asserting that he had publicly called him a homosexual. Ultimately, it was Wilde who was sentenced to two years of hard labor for the crime of sodomy. While serving his sentence, he wrote the autobiography and letter to Douglas titled De Profundis.

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Lord Alfred Douglas, to whom De Profundis is addressed (source)

Upon his release in 1897, he wrote The Ballad of Reading Gaol (1898), in which he condemned the prison system, which he saw as inhumane.

Wilde spent the rest of his life wandering Europe, never to return to England or Ireland. He died of meningitis in 1900

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Additional Info

  • Birthday Date: Thursday, 16 October 2014
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