Essay on The Picture Of Dorian Gray

1649 Words Nov 15th, 2016 7 Pages
In The Picture of Dorian Gray, Dorian’s misconceptions about life, love and his practice of “new Hedonism” ruins a number of lives, but arguably, none more than the life of Sibyl Vane. The destruction of Sibyl Vane at the hands of Dorian Gray is the turning point of the novel that leads Dorian to further his practices and ultimately corrupt himself to the point of no return. Although, critics and the like frequently talk about Sibyl’s death and her influence as a love interest on Dorian, other aspects of their relationship and similarities are less discussed. Sibyl Vane acts as a foil to Dorian Gray, in regards to what he used to be and what he is to become after she has left her impression on him. Dorian’s destruction of Sibyl Vane leads to his own destruction later in his life and her role as his foil emphasizes how both his past and present self had to alter in order to decline as he did. Sibyl’s first mention in the novel comes directly after Lord Henry says, “Never marry at all, Dorian. Men marry because they are tired; women because they are curious: both are disappointed” (Wilde, 43). Dorian replies that he isn’t likely to marry because he is much too in love with Sibyl Vane. This “aphorism” as Dorian puts it, is one of Lord Henry’s that he’s decided to put into practice. Her introduction into the novel stems from a rather pessimistic view of marriage; right from the start, Sibyl Vane is put in an undesirable position. She is essentially at the center of a…

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