Volume 158, 19 December 2014, Pages 33–36
14th Language, Literature and Stylistics Symposium
Slaves and Masters of Words: Conformism of the Sexual Martyr ☆
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Oscar Wilde was an author who resisted the social norms of his time. We can see several instances when he showed resistance, but when we read his works, we can still see the sense of duty that overwhelmed Victorian life. So it is crucial to examine what he did in his works while he became a kind of sexual martyr in his own life. Language is a social device which is used to think and express ourselves. The way in which Oscar Wilde presents his thoughts is interesting since he presents a dilemma. His work, The Crime of Lord Arthur Savile which I am going to examine in my paper, is about a man who tries to murder people in the name of a gendered duty and who gets away with it. With both direct and indirect use of words, Wilde creates a world of morality and duty like a conformist. Direct speech versus action way of language use shows us the direct relation between language, power and knowledge. While the power which holds the language in its hands gives the orders, everyday Victorian man abides by it with his/her actions.