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The Secret Life of Oscar Wilde - Softcover

 
9780099415459: The Secret Life of Oscar Wilde
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I have put my genius into my life but only my talent into my work’.

So said Oscar Wilde of his remarkable life – a life more complex, more erotic, more troubled and more triumphant than any of his contemporaries ever knew or suspected.

Neil McKenna’s The Secret Life of Oscar Wilde charts fully for the first time Oscar’s astonishing erotic odyssey through Victorian London’s sexual underworld.
Oscar Wilde emerges as a man driven personally and creatively by his powerful desires for sex with men, and Neil McKenna argues compellingly and convincingly that Oscar’s Wilde’s life and work can only be fully understood and appreciated in terms of his sexuality.

The book draws of a vast range of sources, many of them previously unpublished, and includes startling new material like the statements made to the police by the male prostitutes and blackmailers ranged against Oscar Wilde at his trial which have been lost for over a century.

Dazzlingly written, The Secret Life of Oscar Wilde meticulously and brilliantly reconstructs Oscar Wilde’s emotional and sexual life, painting an astonishingly frank and vivid portrait of a troubled genius who chose to martyr himself for the cause of love between men.

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Neil McKenna argues that our view of Oscar Wilde, even after Ellman's magisterial biography of the great author and playwright, is determined by Victorian sentimentality. In his own much more modern version of Wilde's story, McKenna portrays the literary genius as being not only extremely promiscuous but also a sort of campaigner for sexual freedom. He reveals, for example, that Wilde's relationship with Lord Alfred Douglas, which provided the inspiration for the classic novel The Picture of Dorian Gray, was not an idealistic doting on a beautiful boy, but that Lord Douglas was the more dominant and experienced of the pair, who used to go out hunting together for young boys. Wilde's last days in Paris were not, McKenna shows, miserable and defeated; Paris was for him an idyllic, sensual and intellectual playground free from the narrowness of London. A groundbreaking book on Victorian sexuality, this unique biography reassesses the stereotypical views of Oscar Wilde and thoroughly embraces his sexuality, as Wilde did himself.
Review:
"Intriguing and entertaining...McKenna makes an impassioned case for re-gaying Wilde" (The Times)

"A groundbreaking new biography of our greatest queer martyr" (Observer)

"It cannot be recommended too highly. Extraordinary, intensely passionate and quite beautiful" (Manchester Evening News)

"This is by far and away the best biography of Oscar Wilde to date" (John McRae, Professor of Literature)

"A bold book" (The Guardian)

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  • PublisherArrow
  • Publication date2004
  • ISBN 10 0099415453
  • ISBN 13 9780099415459
  • BindingPaperback
  • Number of pages752
  • Rating

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Book Description Paperback. Condition: new. Paperback. Neil McKenna's The Secret Life of Oscar Wilde charts fully for the first time Oscar's astonishing erotic odyssey through Victorian London's sexual underworld.Oscar Wilde emerges as a man driven personally and creatively by his powerful desires for sex with men, and Neil McKenna argues compellingly and convincingly that Oscar's Wilde's life and work can only be fully understood and appreciated in terms of his sexuality.'I have put my genius into my life but only my talent into my work'.So said Oscar Wilde of his remarkable life - a life more complex, more erotic, more troubled and more triumphant than any of his contemporaries ever knew or suspected.Neil McKenna's The Secret Life of Oscar Wilde charts fully for the first time Oscar's astonishing erotic odyssey through Victorian London's sexual underworld.Oscar Wilde emerges as a man driven personally and creatively by his powerful desires for sex with men, and Neil McKenna argues compellingly and convincingly that Oscar's Wilde's life and work can only be fully understood and appreciated in terms of his sexuality.The book draws of a vast range of sources, many of them previously unpublished, and includes startling new material like the statements made to the police by the male prostitutes and blackmailers ranged against Oscar Wilde at his trial which have been lost for over a century.Dazzlingly written, The Secret Life of Oscar Wilde meticulously and brilliantly reconstructs Oscar Wilde's emotional and sexual life, painting an astonishingly frank and vivid portrait of a troubled genius who chose to martyr himself for the cause of love between men. Deals with Oscar's astonishing erotic odyssey through Victorian London's sexual underworld. Oscar Wilde emerges as a man driven personally and creatively by his powerful desires for sex with men, in this book, the author argues that Oscar's Wilde's life and work can only be fully understood and appreciated in terms of his sexuality. Shipping may be from our UK warehouse or from our Australian or US warehouses, depending on stock availability. Seller Inventory # 9780099415459

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Book Description Paperback / softback. Condition: New. New copy - Usually dispatched within 4 working days. Dazzlingly written, The Secret Life of Oscar Wilde meticulously and brilliantly reconstructs Oscar Wilde's emotional and sexual life, painting an astonishingly frank and vivid portrait of a troubled genius who chose to martyr himself for the cause of love between men. Seller Inventory # B9780099415459

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Book Description Condition: New. 2004. New Ed. Paperback. McKenna argues that our view of Oscar Wilde is determined by Victorian sentimentality. He reveals his relationship with Lord Douglas, and tells of Wilde's last days in Paris. The biography is based on the author's discovery of new source material. Num Pages: 736 pages, Illustrations, facsims., ports. BIC Classification: 2AB; BG; DSBF; DSK. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 198 x 131 x 42. Weight in Grams: 560. . . . . . Seller Inventory # V9780099415459

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Book Description Condition: New. 2004. New Ed. Paperback. McKenna argues that our view of Oscar Wilde is determined by Victorian sentimentality. He reveals his relationship with Lord Douglas, and tells of Wilde's last days in Paris. The biography is based on the author's discovery of new source material. Num Pages: 736 pages, Illustrations, facsims., ports. BIC Classification: 2AB; BG; DSBF; DSK. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 198 x 131 x 42. Weight in Grams: 560. . . . . . Books ship from the US and Ireland. Seller Inventory # V9780099415459

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