Author: Nicholas Frankel
Publisher: Harvard University Press
Nicholas Frankel presents a revisionary account of Oscar Wilde’s final years, spent in poverty and exile in Europe following his release from an English prison for the crime of gross indecency between men. Despite repeated setbacks and open hostility, Wilde—unapologetic and even defiant—attempted to rebuild himself as a man, and a man of letters.
Author: Nicholas Frankel
Publisher: Harvard University Press
Nicholas Frankel presents a revisionary account of Oscar Wilde's final years, spent in poverty and exile in Europe following his release from an English prison for the crime of gross indecency between men. Despite repeated setbacks and open hostility, Wilde--unapologetic and even defiant--attempted to rebuild himself as a man, and a man of letters.
A fresh, revealing, and entertaining account of the most notorious figure of his age and the women who inspired him. Oscar Wilde famously insisted that "there should be no law for anybody," and his devotion to personal liberty made him a staunch defender of gender equality. Women were central to his life and career. Wilde's Women is the first book to tell the story of the female family members, friends, and colleagues who traded witticisms with Wilde, who gave him access to vital publicity, and to whose ideas he gave expression through his social comedies. In this essential new work, Eleanor Fitzsimons reframes Wilde's story and his legacy through the women in his life, including such scintillating figures as Florence Balcombe; actress Lillie Langtry; and his tragic and witty niece, Dolly, who, like Wilde, loved fast cars, cocaine, and foreign women. Fresh revealing, and entertaining, full of fascinating detail and anecdotes, Wilde's Women relates the untold story of how a beloved writer and libertine played a vitally sympathetic role on behalf of many women, and how they supported him in the midst of a Victorian society in the process of changing forever.
Making Oscar Wilde
Author: Michèle Mendelssohn
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Witty, inspiring, and charismatic, Oscar Wilde is one of the Greats of English literature. Today, his plays and stories are beloved around the world. But it was not always so. His afterlife has given him the legitimacy that life denied him. Making Oscar Wilde reveals the untold story of young Oscar's career in Victorian England and post-Civil War America. Set on two continents, it tracks a larger-than-life hero on an unforgettable adventure to make his name and gain international acclaim. 'Success is a science,' Wilde believed, 'if you have the conditions, you get the result.' Combining new evidence and gripping cultural history, Michèle Mendelssohn dramatizes Wilde's rise, fall, and resurrection as part of a spectacular transatlantic pageant. With superb style and an instinct for story-telling, she brings to life the charming young Irishman who set out to captivate the United States and Britain with his words and ended up conquering the world. Following the twists and turns of Wilde's journey, Mendelssohn vividly depicts sensation-hungry Victorian journalism and popular entertainment alongside racial controversies, sex scandals, and the growth of Irish nationalism. This ground-breaking revisionist history shows how Wilde's tumultuous early life embodies the story of the Victorian era as it tottered towards modernity. Riveting and original, Making Oscar Wilde is a masterful account of a life like no other.
The first biography of Oscar Wilde that places him within the context of his family and social and historical milieu--a compelling volume that finally tells the whole story. It's widely known that Oscar Wilde was precociously intellectual, flamboyant, and hedonistic--but lesser so that he owed these characteristics to his parents. Oscar's mother, Lady Jane Wilde, rose to prominence as a political journalist, advocating a rebellion against colonialism in 1848. Proud, involved, and challenging, she opened a salon and was known as the most scintillating hostess of her day. She passed on her infectious delight in the art of living to Oscar, who drank it in greedily. His father, Sir William Wilde, was acutely conscious of injustices of the social order. He laid the foundations for the Celtic cultural renaissance in the belief that culture would establish a common ground between the privileged and the poor, Protestant and Catholic. But Sir William was also a philanderer, and when he stood accused of sexually assaulting a young female patient, the scandal and trial sent shockwaves through Dublin society. After his death, the Wildes decamped to London where Oscar burst irrepressibly upon the scene. The one role that didn't suit him was that of Victorian husband, as his wife, Constance, was to discover. For beneath his swelling head was a self-destructive itch: a lifelong devourer of attention, Oscar was unable to recognize when the party was over. Ultimately, his trial for indecency heralded the death of decadence--and his own. In a major repositioning of our first modern celebrity, The Fall of the House of Wilde identifies Oscar Wilde as a member of one of the most dazzling Irish American families of Victorian times, and places him in the broader social, political, and religious context. It is a fresh and perceptive account of one of the most prominent characters of the late nineteenth century.
Author: Laura Lee
The dramatic story of the legal and emotional battle that raged between two of Oscar Wilde's closest friends - both former lovers - following the playwright's death
Publishes for the first time the author's original, uncensored typescript, in an annotated edition with 60 color illustrations.
Author: Franny Moyle
Publisher: Open Road Media
“Tells the poignant story of Constance in the aftermath of Wilde’s trials and imprisonment, and of her brave attempts to keep in contact with him despite her suffering.” —The Irish Times In the spring of 1895 the life of Constance Wilde changed irrevocably. Up until the conviction of her husband, Oscar, for homosexual crimes, she had held a privileged position in society. Part of a gilded couple, she was a popular children’s author, a fashion icon, and a leading campaigner for women’s rights. A founding member of the magical society The Golden Dawn, her pioneering and questioning spirit encouraged her to sample some of the more controversial aspects of her time. Mrs. Oscar Wilde was a phenomenon in her own right. But that spring Constance’s entire life was eclipsed by scandal. Forced to flee to the Continent with her two sons, her glittering literary and political career ended abruptly. She lived in exile until her death. Franny Moyle now tells Constance’s story with a fresh eye. Drawing on numerous unpublished letters, she brings to life the story of a woman at the heart of fin-de-siècle London and the Aesthetic movement. In a compelling and moving tale of an unlikely couple caught up in a world unsure of its moral footing, Moyle unveils the story of a woman who was the victim of one of the greatest betrayals of all time.
Author: Oscar Wilde
Publisher: Trieste Publishing
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Author: Murray Douglas
Publisher: Miramax Books
Lord Alfred Douglas, or 'Bosie' as he was known , is destined to be remembered as the lover of Oscar Wilde. Dissolute, well-born and beautiful as a young man, his role in the events that led to Oscar Wilde's trial and imprisonment determined the strange celebrity which haunted him until his death. Biographies of Wilde generally give only a cursory account of what happened to Douglas after Wilde's death, but Bosie recounts the full and absorbing story of his complex life. A successful though now obscure poet, he renounced homosexuality after converting to Roman Catholicism and embarked on an ill-fated marriage to Olive Custance. Lord Alfred's time was largely consumed by his growing interest in religion and costly feuds - he was imprisoned for libeling Winston Churchill - and he died a neglected and lonely figure in 1945. Douglas Murray has had unprecedented access to many letters and key literary manuscripts, and presents evidence which casts a new light on the relationship between Wilde and Bosie. Indeed, Murray has succeeded where Bosie himself failed in securing the release of a British government file which was to be sealed until 2043. The result is a genuinely groundbreaking biography, and the definitive account of a fascinating life.
"And I? May I say nothing, my lord?" With these words, Oscar Wilde's courtroom trials came to a close. The lord in question, High Court justice Sir Alfred Wills, sent Wilde to the cells, sentenced to two years in prison with hard labor for the crime of "gross indecency" with other men. As cries of "shame" emanated from the gallery, the convicted aesthete was roundly silenced. But he did not remain so. Behind bars and in the period immediately after his release, Wilde wrote two of his most powerful works--the long autobiographical letter De Profundis and an expansive best-selling poem, The Ballad of Reading Gaol. In The Annotated Prison Writings of Oscar Wilde, Nicholas Frankel collects these and other prison writings, accompanied by historical illustrations and his rich facing-page annotations. As Frankel shows, Wilde experienced prison conditions designed to break even the toughest spirit, and yet his writings from this period display an imaginative and verbal brilliance left largely intact. Wilde also remained politically steadfast, determined that his writings should inspire improvements to Victorian England's grotesque regimes of punishment. But while his reformist impulse spoke to his moment, Wilde also wrote for eternity. At once a savage indictment of the society that jailed him and a moving testimony to private sufferings, Wilde's prison writings--illuminated by Frankel's extensive notes--reveal a very different man from the famous dandy and aesthete who shocked and amused the English-speaking world.
In The Secret Life of Oscar Wilde, Neil McKenna provides stunning new insight into the tumultuous sexual and psychological worlds of this brilliant and tormented figure. McKenna charts Wilde’s astonishing odyssey through London’s sexual underworld, and provides explosive new evidence of the political machinations behind Wilde’s trials for sodomy. Dazzlingly written and meticulously researched, The Secret Life of Oscar Wilde offers a vividly original portrait of a troubled genius who chose to martyr himself for the cause of love between men.
Author: Thomas Edward Wright
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
In 1628, William Harvey published his revolutionary discovery that the blood circulated through the body. This one theory demolished 1,500 years of medical thinking, dating back to Galen and Roman times, and introduced a radical vision of the working of the human body that had profound cultural consequences. Indeed, Harvey's theory influenced not only anatomists, but also economists, poets and political thinkers. Its impact on what we now call the "history of science," and on culture generally, was arguably as great as Darwin's theory of evolution or Newton's theory of gravity. Thomas Wright's biography of Harvey celebrates the meteoric rise of a yeoman's son to the elevated position of King's physician, and paints an admiring portrait of an extraordinary mind amid a fertile time in England's intellectual history. Set in late Renaissance London, Wright's vivid portrait features an illustrious cast of historical characters, from Francis Bacon and John Donne to Robert Fludd,whose corroboration of Harvey's ideas helped launch his circulation theory. Wright traces Harvey's progress from the farmlands of Kent to England's royal palace, and offers a brilliant reconstruction of Harvey's epoch-making research, which involved countless dissections of human corpses and live animals. After he published his discoveries, Harvey became famous throughout Europe, where he toured the major universities, demonstrating his theory by vivisection. But when the Charles I was toppledduring the English Civil War in 1649, his court physician fell too, and Harvey found himself banished from London. He would ultimately die in relative obscurity, suffering from gout and melancholy. A victim of the political turmoil of the times, William Harvey nevertheless was the mainspring of vast historical changes in medicine and anatomy, launching a revolution that would continue to run its course long after his death.
Oscar Wilde Prefigured
Author: Dominic Janes
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
That there is a queeras opposed to merely homosexualhistory before Oscar Wilde will come as news to many in the sexuality studies field. Oscar Wilde Prefigured. It turns out that there is indeed a history of queerness, and that is originated in the early 18th century, coming to a head, as it were, by the end of the 19th. Dominic Janes draws on lots of new historical material, especially parodies and stereotypes in caricatures of sodomy and effeminacy. Front and center, then, are the 18th-century macaronies and mollies and men of feeling, the Regency dandies, and Victorian aesthetes. Visual display become a powerful historical tableau, generating a long history of queerness/homosexuality via caricatures of allegedly effeminate types. Images of effeminacy became a cultural field in which same-sex desire could be expressed. Wilde, then, was not the starting-point of public gay figures, but the endpoint. Wilde, in turn, is the pivot for connecting the Georgian figures to 20th-century stereotypes of camp (think Liberace), using images drawn from theater, fashion, and popular press to reveal new dimensions of identity politics and queer culture."
Exiled in Paris
Author: James Campbell
Publisher: Univ of California Press
This is the first book to explore the English-language literary scene in Paris after World War II, including the intersecting lives of Richard Wright, Samuel Beckett, James Baldwin, and Maurice Girodias.