The Importance of Being Earnest Study Guide

The Importance of Being Earnest Study Guide

Original title:
The Importance of Being Earnest
January 1st 2005 by Prestwick House Inc. (first published 1895)
London, England Woolton, Hertfordshire, England (United Kingdom)
ISBN 158049580X (ISBN13: 9781580495806)

“The Importance of Being Earnest” is a play written by Oscar Wilde and first performed in 1895. Despite its enduring popularity, this work of art was banned due to author’s social and personal preferences that couldn’t be accepted by the community he lived in.

Reading Wilde books isn’t an easy thing. It feels like you are stealing from yourself. It’s a great pleasure to enjoy the beautiful wording, appreciate a unique style, lough at the paradoxes revealed in the text. But once you finish the author’s creation, this terrible revelation hits you that there are fewer and fewer books left to discover.

This small play talks about great responsibilities of Jack Worthing. He is supervising a large estate and a daughter of a rich man. When he wants to get away from all the daily routines, he goes to visit his crazy brother Ernest. Imagine having a sick friend who desperately needs you at the exact moment when a chore you hate the most is waiting for you. That is Ernest for Jack.

The play is funny, witty, and sarcastic. It’s absurd in some parts and wise in the others. The mix of aphorisms and mind games makes even the most serious reader smile. There’s a fine line between comedy and sarcasm and it’s up to the reader to decide where this line is crossed on the text. But it is crossed multiple times.

The author talks about society’s laws and morals, snobbery and selfishness. But each line of the text is so witty and full of meanings that the focus on the reader is on the form more than on the content. It’s even more important knowing the fact that the author made his name in the drama genre before writing “The Importance of Being Ernest”.



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