Oscar Wilde

A few nights ago Elise woke me up reading in bed and laughing. She highlighted the following:

But beauty, real beauty, ends where an intellectual expression begins. Intellect is in itself a mode of exaggeration, and destroys the harmony of any face. The moment one sits down to think, one becomes all nose, or all forehead, or something horrid.

Needless to say, I was won over immediately. I am far too old to have never read Dorian Gray and we happen to be lucky enough to own two copies. Part of me is more than convinced this book needs to be read alongside Plato’s Symposium, to say nothing of the tripartite relationship of Lord Henry, Basil, and Dorian. I should not shock anyone suggesting a philosophic undertone to Wilde’s book, especially its playful treatment of amour propre and existence. Yet another reason to look for an excuse to teach a course on Political Philosophy in the English Language. All this said it is a joy beyond joy to be reading a book with my wife rather than playing catch up.


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