Thursday, April 28, 2011

Uncensored version of 'The Picture of Dorian Gray' published!!

Over 120 years after it was condemned as 'vulgar' and 'unclean', an uncensored version of Oscar Wilde's The Picture of Dorian Gray is published by Harvard University Press.

Revised after it was condemned in the British press over 130 years ago as "vulgar", "unclean", "poisonous" and "discreditable", an uncensored version of Oscar Wilde's The Picture of Dorian Gray has finally been published.

Seems that Frankel, associate professor of English at Virginia Commonwealth University said "the time is ripe for the publication of Wilde's novel in its uncensored form … It is the version of the novel that Wilde, I believe, would want us to be reading in the 21st century … I'm bringing it out of the closet a little more."

To read the whole article, click here.

If not, you can read some of the interesting parts here ;)

These were some of the editing done to make the book "acceptable to the most fastidious taste". Wilde's editor, JM Stoddart, removed references to Gray's female lovers as his "mistresses". For examplethe question; "Is Sybil Vane your mistress ?" was altered to "What are your relations with Sibyl Vane ?"

Other examples that were edited/censored were:
"It is quite true I have worshipped you with far more romance of feeling than a man should ever give to a friend. Somehow I have never loved a woman," Hallward tells Dorian, in one passage was changed to "From the moment I met you, your personality had the most extraordinary influence over me".

Here, Hallward describes the feelings which had driven his portrait of Gray. "There was love in every line, and in every touch there was passion."

Another restored line describes Gray walking the street at night; "A man with curious eyes had suddenly peered into his face, and then dogged him with stealthy footsteps, passing and repassing him many times."

Gray also reflects on Hallward's feelings for him. "There was something infinitely tragic in a romance that was at once so passionate and sterile."

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What do you think? Do you think it's a good decision made by the publisher? Will it make a difference to you?

I have yet to read the book haha So...no comment. But I thought it'd be something interesting for me to put up on my blog for keep sake :)

5 comments:

sintaicharles said...

Thanks for the information.

I have the book but haven't read it. Will read it after I have finished reading Middlesex.

Xweing said...

U mean the gay parts are now resurfaced... haha

I read the book by Penguin publishers a few years back. Couldn't take my hands off it. Must read!

And do you know that there's a movie too? Brings the book to real life. But I still haven't finished watching it, cos actually I don't really enjoy watching period pieces, no matter in Hollywood productions or TVB dramas~ :-)

A Bookaholic said...

sintaicharles: You're welcome. Yeah I'm thinking of reading the book too...

Xweing: I guess they make it more apparent now by publishing its original version?

Yeah...I know of the movie, but have not seen it yet...I'm your opposite. I'm quite ok with period pieces hehe

Au and Target said...

This is one of my favourite stories. I had no idea it was censored; I thought I'd read a kid's version and an adult one!

A Bookaholic said...

Yep! I didn't know it too! Woww it's so many ppl's favourite story...I gotta read this soon...

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