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The theme of the double


The Victorian age had on the English people not only an economical dichotomy, but also a social between the upper classes and the poorer classes. Also known as the Victorian Compromise, the English society was split into two but with an attempt of hiding all the biggest social problems such as unemployment, prostitution, juvenile exploitation, unbearable hygienic conditions. The morality supported by Queen Victoria herself, a Puritan faith-following woman, celebrated the triumph of the family model, where woman were considered "angels of home" and sez a taboo. This situation gave birth in the upper society to a code of respectability but it accentuated hypocrisy. This dualism between respectability, the clearer side, the facade of a gentleman, and hypocrisy, the darkest and most mysterious side was reflected on the literally production of the Victorian Age. Mystery novels and Crime novels were the most popular types of novel at the time. Oscar Wilde's novel "The portrait of Dorian Gray" and Stevenson's "The strange case of Dr.Jekyll and Mr.Hyde" are the best examples of this content. In both novels there is an attempt to separate clearly good from evil side of the same man. For example, Dorian Gray transfers all of his physical decadence of aging into the portrait and Dr.Jekyll drinks a serum. Following both stories the evil part takes control over the good part bringing the character into a destructive and draining way to death.
The symbolical representations of those sides of man are the reflection of them in society but inside this explanation there is the answer: there is none. The man or the Victorian society has to accept this union between good and evil with a compromise, known as the Victorian Compromise. All the attempts in novels to separate these themes lead the characters to death, and in society this is absolutely impossible.
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Blake, Romanticism, Wordsworth