The Model Millionaire,by Oscar Wilde
I. Presentation of the story
The short story The Model Millionaire is part of the book Lord Arthur Savile's Crime and Other Stories, a collection of short semi-comic mystery stories written by Oscar Wilde and published in 1891. It is a third-person narrative, whose narrator starts the text expressing his opinions and judgments about the characters. Hughie, the main character, is described as a very handsome man, whose beauty is useless, because he is poor and does not have much intelligence. ‘Unless one is wealthy there is no use in being a charming person. The poor should be ordinary and practical’ is the beginning of this interesting story and reveals a lot about it and its author.
II. Short biography of the author
Oscar Fingal O'Flahertie Wills Wilde (1854 – 1900) was a famous playwright, novelist, poet and critic. His wit, intelligence, sarcasm, criticism, irony and paradoxical points of view made his style unmistakable and admired. He was born in Dublin and his mother, Lady Jane Francesca Wilde (1820-1896), was a successful poet and journalist and a society hostess. This may explain, and the fact he was always involved with the high society, Oscar Wilde’s opinion about the aristocracy and how well he knew their nature. He studied at Oxford, where he started developing his poetry and ideas.There, he met the Aestheticism, or Aesthetic movement, whose doctrine, which can be summarized by the sentence'Art for Art's Sake', influenced his work immensely. He wrote nine plays – among them The Importance of Being Earnest(1895), one of the most well-known and acclaimed by the critics, numerous poems, short storiesand essays– including fairy tales forhis twosons, but only one novel, The Picture of Dorian Gray (1891). His allegedly homoerotic overtones were a polemic issue in that very conservative society. In fact, Wilde’s life was a scandal due to his sexuality: in 1891, he started an affair with the son of an...
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