A Woman of No Importance by Oscar Wilde

Topics: Victorian era, Gossip, Woman Pages: 2 (650 words) Published: December 5, 2010
A Woman of No Importance
In the play of ‘A Woman of No Importance’ Oscar Wilde gradually and effectively introduces the characters of the play in a fashionably manner. The play is quite naturalistic so Wilde commences the opening of act one with a social conversation. The purpose of the play is to portray women’s attitudes and views on their current century. Each of the characters introduced in the play is unique from one another, they’re point of view on life in general is diverse. To create a contrast between the characters in the play, Oscar Wilde introduces the personalities of Hester and Lady Caroline. This enables Wilde to illustrate different ideas, customs and perception of society from both the American and British points of view. Hester Worsely is presented to the audience as a care-free and open minded American girl. She speaks her mind with ease and has no problem in answering back to the witty and clever Lady Caroline. “Lady Caroline: Have you any country? What we should call country? Hester [smiling]: We have the largest country in the world, Lady Caroline...” Lady Caroline is trying to insult Hester by defaming America, however, Hester not taking any offence, answers Lady Caroline rather enthusiastically. This shows the difference in the way people speak in England and the way people in America speak. As the act continues, Wilde shows the audience how the characters disguise their criticism for each other under a facade. An example of a disguised criticism would be from Lady Caroline towards Mrs. Allonby: “Lady Caroline: It is said, of course, that she ran away twice before she was married...I myself don’t believe she ran away more than once.” Although Lady Caroline is putting down Mrs Allonby, she masks it by giving her opinion on how she doesn’t believe in the rumour. Soon more characters are shown entering the stage, very casually, and joining in on the conversation already taking place. Lady Hunstanton, who is the host to invite Hester,...
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