Corruption and Consequences in The Picture of Dorian Gray Essay

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According to the nurture theory of the evolution of human behavior, when a child is first brought into the world it has no basis or idea of how to perceive things. The child is pure and innocent. It is naive to its surroundings, depending on the guidance of those around it to show it the way. When a child is born, most are accompanied by loving nurses, doctors, and parents. The moment this child encounters these other beings, the influences upon the individual begins. Their parents and peers influence their personas and ultimately who they become. They instill in them the values and morals necessary to survive in society. They teach them self-control, cleanliness, repression of anger and respect for elders and property. It is …show more content…
Basil remarks “He is all art to me now” and “Dorian Gray is to me simply a motive in art”(7-8; ch 1), suggesting that Dorian should be seen as a work of art. Lord Henry also remarks he “looks as if he was made out of ivory and rose-leaves”. These statements further the notion that Dorian is open for an artist’s impressions, a position assumed by Lord Henry Wotton.

Lord Henry’s presence around Dorian is in essence the beginning of his corruption. Basil attempted to deter Lord Henry claiming that he would “spoil him” and pleaded with Lord Henry saying, “don’t influence him. Your influence would be bad” (10; ch. 1). And later remarks “something has changed in you completely… you talk as if you had no heart, no pity in you. Its all Harry’s [Lord Henry] influence. I see that.”(79; ch 9) Lord Henry implants outrageous ideas such as “when your youth goes, your beauty will go with it, and then you will suddenly discover that there are no triumphs left for you, or have to content yourself with those mean triumphs that the memory of your past will make more bitter than defeats”(16; ch 2) and “… youth is the one thing worth having”(34; ch. 4). He emphasizes the power of youth and beauty even more by saying “It has its divine power of sovereignty. It makes princes of those who have it”. (16; ch. 2). These statements are basically saying your life has no meaning once you no longer have your youth and

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