The Importance of Being Earnest

Oscar Wilde

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A Wild(e) Life
Oscar Wilde, celebrated playwright and literary provocateur, was born in Dublin on October16,1854. He was educated at Trinity College, Dublin and Magdalen College, Oxford beforesettling in London. During his days at Dublin and Oxford, he developed aset of attitudes andpostures for which he would eventuallybecome famous.Chief among these were his flamboyant style of dress, his contempt for conventional values, and his belief in aestheticism—a movement that embracedthe principle of art for the sake of beautyand beauty alone. After a stunning performance in college, Wilde settled in London in 1878, where he moved in circles that included the novelists Henry James and the young William Butler Yeats…