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Essay The Trial of the Sensational Oscar Wilde

Project id 1015425
Subject area Arts Entertainment
Document type Essay
Words 1715
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The Trial of the Sensational Oscar Wilde Ed Cohen's Talk on the Wilde Side discusses the trial of Oscar Wilde in 1895. Cohen investigates the lack of legal transcripts of the situation that depends on newspaper press reports and accounts to record this particular lawsuit. His investigations to the clarity of their newspaper accounts found that they "were exceptionally conducive stories whose narrative structures arranged and gave purposeful shapes to the events they purported to correctly represent" (4). In the second part of the book, Cohen discusses Oscar Wilde's trial and its importance, the outcomes of the fictionalized paper reports of the proceedings, in addition to the role of Wilde's The Picture of Dorian Gray from the legal proceedings. Oscar Wilde's trial and conviction were major publicized events throughout the 19th century. His trial changed the way the public viewed sexual behaviour in addition to homosexuality and the offense of sodomy. Havelock Ellis, the writer of Sexual Inversion, suggests, "The celebrity of Oscar Wilde and the international publicity contributed to the details of this situation by the newspapers may have brought conviction of their perversion to many inverts who were before only vaguely aware of the abnormality, as well as paradoxical though it may seem, have imparted greater courage to others; but it can scarcely have sufficed to grow the number of inverts" (97). The trial created lasting impressions on homosexuals in it made being so a crime. Cohen looks at the background of this trial also defines, with fantastic detail, the evolving crime of sodomy. Sodomy is defined as "acts of gross indecency with another male person" (103); however, it's also been known to incorporate a plethora of sexual acts from birth c.. .

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