Lady Augusta Bracknell in the Importance of Being Ernest

Topics: The Importance of Being Earnest, Working class, Social class Pages: 4 (1664 words) Published: October 9, 2008
Lady Augusta Bracknell In The Importance of Being Ernest
The most memorable character and one who has a tremendous impact on the audience is Lady Augusta Bracknell. Wilde’s audience would have identified most with her titled position and bearing. Wilde humorously makes her the tool of the conflict, and much of the satire. She serves well the plot and the theme of the play. She is the strong hand who forces the whole play to move forward with a happy ending. . Generally, Lady Bracknell is first and foremost a symbol of Victorian earnestness and the unhappiness it brings as a result. She is powerful, arrogant, ruthless to the extreme, conservative, and proper. In many ways, she represents Wilde’s opinion of Victorian upper-class negativity, conservative and repressive values, and power. Her opinions and mannerisms betray a careful and calculated speaking pattern. She is able to go round for round with the other characters on witty epigrams and social repartee. Despite her current position, Lady Bracknell was not always a member of the upper class; she was a social climber bent on marrying into the aristocracy. As a former member of the lower class, she represents the righteousness of the formerly excluded. Because she is now Lady Bracknell, she has opinions on society, marriage, religion, money, illness, death, and respectability. She is another of Wilde’s inventions to present his satire on these subjects. So, talking about her importance for the plot, we may notice that she is the person who raises a lot of important questions and at last she is the one who has the power to answer it. By doing that, she drive the play to move to the destination. Back to Wilde’s time, this kind of the drama needs one kind people who serve as the obstacle which must be dealt with and overcome by the main characters. This is the basic explanation for Lady Bracknell’s importance in the play. However, she is more than that kind of obstacle. She blocks sometimes and she offers a...
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