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Title: Oscar Wilde and the paternal figure.
Authors: Goh, Yi Li.
Keywords: DRNTU::Humanities
Issue Date: 2010
Abstract: Recent approaches to Oscar Wilde’s compositions have primarily revolved around the effect of Wilde’s Irish heritage and the homosexual representations in his work. However, I feel the idea of the role of the father is an aspect of Wilde’s work that has largely been ignored. As mentioned above, Sir William’s lack of involvement had a rather significant impact on Wilde’s works and on his life as Sir William’s absence can arguably be considered the reason why Wilde was seemingly more inspired by his mother’s presence and personality than his father’s. I would like to investigate the impact of this lack of paternal influence in Wilde’s life and work by applying Jacques Lacan’s version of psychoanalysis to three of Wilde’s texts – The Picture of Dorian Gray, Salome and The Importance of Being Earnest. This essay’s focus will begin with an explanation of Lacan’s idea of the father which is split into three orders – the symbolic father, the imaginary father and the real father. Next, I will investigate the concept of the mirror stage, analyze the role of the father in Wilde’s works and discuss the impact of one’s ancestry and lineage. Finally, this essay will analyze the role of the mother in Wilde’s texts. However, whenever Lacan’s concepts of psychoanalysis fall short, I would be engaging Sigmund Freud’s theories as well to complete my analysis on the father figure in Wilde’s works.
Rights: Nanyang Technological University
Fulltext Permission: restricted
Fulltext Availability: With Fulltext
Appears in Collections:HSS Student Reports (FYP/IA/PA/PI)

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