The sample essay on Dorian Gray Corruption deals with a framework of research-based facts, approaches and arguments concerning this theme. To see the essay’s introduction, body paragraphs and conclusion, read on.
How does Dorian Gray become corrupted? Is he really so innocent? Does he В« sell his soul В», if so when? Various stages of corruption Dorian is obviously corrupted at first by Lord Henry who tells him his beauty will not last forever, and advises him to take advantages of his beauty: “Live! Live the wonderful life that is in you! Let be nothing lost upon you”.
For Lord Henry, beauty rhymes with youth and Dorian Gray should enjoy his beauty to make new experiences.
Lord Henry plays a big role In Dorian corruption since he Is the one who UT In Doorman’s brain the Idea that beauty Is the only thing worthy In this world. According to Lord Henry, Dorian can do whatever he wants thanks to his beauty but It will last as long as Dorian Is beautiful.
Once ugly, Dorian will have to fight to obtain something In this world. These poisonous words lead Dorian to put beauty above everything. When Dorian Gray looked at his portrait for the first time It Is Like a revelation: “A look of joy came into his eyes, as if he had recognized himself for the first time.
The sense of his own beauty came on him like a revelation”. This assuage could refer to the Bible when Adam and Eve eat the apple, then look at each other in a different way since they are aware of new desires… And here the snake would stand for Lord Henry.
Harry is the masters of witty words which appear terribly attractive to Dorian. Moreover, as being older and scholar, Lord Henry has a peculiar way to see life. According to him women are pointless, one should not mourn a person’s death (ref : Sybil) , very few people are worthy, etc.
What is more, Basil Hallways is also one of the reasons why Dorian becomes corrupted as he is the one ho painted and therefore revealed to Dorian his own beauty through his portrait. The first visible instance of Doorman’s corruption happens after he rejects Sibyl Vane. When Dorian comes home and sees his portrait, the painted image now has an expression of cruelty on its face. This terrifies Dorian and convinces him to correct his cruelty towards Sibyl and be a better person in general. However the arrival of Lord Henry with his news of Sibyl’s death and his poisonous world makes Dorian changes his mind.
He decides to experience “Eternal youth, infinite passion, pleasures subtle ND secret, wild Joys and wilder sins – (… )” and to let his portrait “bear the burden of his shame”. This was only the beginning of his plummet into the dark side… Then Lord Henrys bad influence is at Its peak when he offers Dorian the yellow book. This book, which is not properly named, is about a young Parisian who dedicates his life to vices and sins. Dorian finds himself so fascinated by It that he decides to make his own life similar to the mall character’s one: “for years, Dorian Gray could not free himself from the influence of this book. “he never sought to free himself”.
Then his Innocence disappears for good. Later In the novel, Dorian will Implore Lord Henry not to lend the book to anyone else because It poisoned him and “It does harm”. Indeed, after reading this book Dorian corrupts young gentlemen and brings shame on them and their families. There Is a lapse In time of eighteen years In the novel after Sibyl death where it’s hinted that he did various other bad deeds that cause several his youthful beauty.
One night, Basil seeks Dorian out to confront him about his bad petition, they argue and Dorian decides to show Basil exactly how true the rumors are by showing him his hidden portrait after Basil has witnessed in horror the changes made to his painting, Dorian slit his throat in rage and resentment. He then blackmails an ex-friend doctor to dispose of the body which will drive the friend to suicide later in the novel. Doorman’s guilt pushes him after that to go to an opium den where he meets James Vane who will end up dead after following him to a hunt and accidentally getting shot.
In the end, Dorian too frightened and repulsed by the vying proof of the taint of his soul stab his portrait and accidentally kills himself. The last stage of corruption is obvious at the end, all control is lost. He murders Basil, and then tries to kill his conscience, which he identifies with his picture. Instead, he himself dies and become completely evil. Dorian corrupted behavior and way of thinking is the cause of death of his entourage. Everyone who is close with him becomes corrupted even Lord Henrys sister, Lady Condoled who after meeting with him isn’t able to live with her children anymore.
Doorman’s sins are reflected in his stricture which he hides from the world as he’s afraid of people guessing his true nature. Furthermore, the city of London also plays a part in Dorian Grays corruption. London, like Dorian Gray had two different aspects: the East and the West, the “good” side and the “evil” one. Although East London was dedicated to “sins” like prostitution and drugs (opium), West London represented the aristocracy. As the novel progresses Dorian is drawn by the East: muff have been seen creeping at dawn out of dreadful houses and slinking in disguise into the foulest dens in London. Is he really so innocent? At the beginning of the novel, Dorian Gray is depicted like an innocent young man.
In the 1st chapter Basil introduces Dorian Gray like a piece of art: “Unconsciously he defines for me the lines of a French school (… ) the harmony of soul and body’. So before Lord Henrys corruption, Dorian Gray remains as pure as his beauty. However, the painter who is explaining to Lord Henry Watson, one of his best friends, how Dorian influences his art, also uses these words to describe Dorian: “Now and then, however, he is horribly thoughtless, and seems to take a real delight in giving me main” (chapter 1).
At the beginning of the novel, Dorian even though he hasn’t committed any sins, is described as someone who hurt people without being aware of it. Furthermore, the words used to describe Dorian Gray in the 2nd chapter usually refer to children: “swinging wound on the music-stool in a willful, petulant manner”, “a faint blush colored his cheeks for a moment”, “a funny look of penitence. “, “cried”, “a little moue of discontent”. It can be argued that Dorian Gray is innocent like a child is : children are usually considered innocent and naive but they can also be cruel, elfish or insensitive sometimes.
What is more we learn Dorian Grays background in chapter Ill, and it appears to be very dark. Indeed, his mother had an affair with a man of inferior status, at the end of which the man is murdered on her father’s orders. Then Doorman’s mother died giving birth. Those sorts of events usually play a part in a man’s mind and could be the origin of his taste for corruption he ignored first. Last but not least, Dorian Gray is not that innocent because he always had the opportunity to choose between what his good according to his conscience, and what rod “choice” is of major importance: it means he still has free will.
But Dorian Grays vanity leads his life: he prefers his appearance to his moral principle. Does he sell his soul and if so when? In chapter II Dorian Gray unconsciously sells his soul when he pronounces the wish to stay young forever while the portrait would grow old instead: “If it were I who was to be always young and the picture that was to grow old! (… ) I would give my soul for that. Although Dorian Gray never signs contract with the devil, his sacrifice is similar: e trades his soul for the luxury of eternal youth.
Nevertheless Dorian Gray makes this wish without knowing that it will became true. So he is rather “innocent” in chapter two. There isn’t a clear moment in the novel where Dorian willingly signs his soul to a demon, there isn’t any indication that anything paranormal happened until a month later when the painting suddenly changes after a cruel action. But Dorian Gray clearly believes that the portrait changes are due to the prayer he made when he first saw the portrait: “Suddenly there flashed across his mind what he said in
Basil Halyard’s studio the picture had been finished (… ) He had uttered a mad wish that he himself might remain young, and the portrait grow old (… ) Surely his wish had not been fulfilled? (.. ) And, yet, there was the picture before him, with the touch of cruelty in the mouth. ” This is when Dorian understands that his wish came true, so he is aware of his “corruption” and in chapter 8 he deliberately choose to become evil. “He fell that the time had really come for making his choice. (… ) The portrait was to bear the burden of his shame: that was all.