The Importance of Being Earnest
by Oscar Wilde
Love and Marriage
What attitudes toward marriage do Algernon and Lady Bracknell represent?
-Algernon: The Bachelor
~ Completely against marriage
~ Enjoys bachelor lifestyle
~Looks upon marriage as a game
~ Represents the attitude that pursuit of pleasure is more important than marriage itself
-Lady Bracknell: Dowager
~ Process of careful selection by parents
~ Love and children's opinion not factors
~ Used to better family
~ Social status, lineage, and wealth base means of business propositions to unite and benefit power
~Represents the attitude that marriage is not for pleasure but for business means
In what ways are the play's values about love and marriage similar to or different from today's values?
~ Algernon's attitude
~ Many men today have the same idea upon marriage
~ They would rather have quick relations with girls and have a solo fun life oppose to "tying themselves down"
~They too mistrust marriage
~ Lady Bracknell's attitude is not commonly shared
~ Parents want their children to make their own choices, be in love, and happy
~ They have their own opinions and today marriage is not simply for business purposes
~ Today the power of love is believed in