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Oscar Wilde Revalued

An Essay on New Materials and Methods of Research

Ian Small

Publication Year: 1993

In Oscar Wilde Revalued, Ian Small chronicles the significant changes in Wildean critcism and suggests that a "demythologized" Wilde is surfacing from innovative but scattered research by scholars working in areas as distinct as women's studies, textual scholarship and theatre history. The book places the scholarship in an authoritative context, makes explicit changes that have occurred since E. H. Mikhail's bibliography, corrects earlier bibliographical inaccuracies, and provides a census and description of the manuscripts available.

Published by: ELT Press

Frontmatter

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Content

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pp. v-vii

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Preface

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pp. viii-ix

This review of research on Wilde had its origins some time ago. It was initially commissioned by the Modern Language Association of America as part of a projected review of research on Anglo-Irish literature; the original material was read by Katharine Worth and John Stokes...

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Acknowledgements

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pp. x-

The author is grateful to the following copyright holders for permission to print manuscript material: Mrs. Imogen Dennis and Ms. Helen Guglielmini; Mr. Merlin Holland; the Early of Lytton; Ms. Jennifer Gosse; Random House UK Limited...

Abbreviations

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pp. xi-

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1 The Myth of Wilde

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pp. 1-10

SINCE 1900 Oscar Wilde has been the subject of some 13,000 articles or books of one kind or another. Or at least so E. H. Mikhail estimated in his 1978 bibliography. Clearly few writers have achieved the distinction of having had so much ink spilled on their behalf. By the same token...

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2 Biography Reconsidered

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pp. 11-26

AREGRETTABLE but unfortunately correct claim made by Wendell Harris (1973) and later by Ian Fletcher and John Stokes (1976) was that all biographies of Wilde had been characterized by their inaccuracy. Fletcher and Stokes, for example...

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3 Prologue to the Letters

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pp. 27-98

UNTIL very recently virtually the only area of study where Wilde had been at all adequately served was in his letters. Sir Rupert Hart-Davis produced his excellent and knowledgeable edition of The Letters of Oscar Wilde in 1962. Its collection of over a thousand items supplemented...

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4 Manuscripts

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pp. 99-154

EDITORS and critics alike have been aware for some time of the complexity of Wilde's compositional practices. From the early 1880s onwards his extensive borrowing has been frequently noted, initially and most famously perhaps...

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5 Literary Histories

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pp. 155-172

AS I indicated in the first chapter, Wilde's changing fortunes at the hands of literary historians is a fascinating topic in itself. One way of making sense of the recent revaluation of Wilde is to trace its origins to larger changes in...

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6 Major Critical Studies

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pp. 173-180

WILDE'S treatment at the hands of literary critics maps very precisely on to the changes in literary history which the previous section, Literary Histories, documented. Broadly speaking, up to the Second World War critical studies of Wilde did nothing to redefine his place in literary history. The bibliographical...

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7 General Critical Studies

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pp. 181-200

WILLIAM Tydeman (1982) anthologizes some contemporary reviews of the plays and some of the major critical essays written since in Macmillan's Casebook series. The contemporary accounts include reviews by William Archer; the critical accounts range from essays by Max Beerbohm and...

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8 Editions

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pp. 201-208

THERE is no satisfactory complete edition of Wilde. The only editions which have approached completeness are Robert Ross's beautifully produced 1908 edition (now a collector's item) and G. F. Maine's 1948 single volume Works, published by Collins and subsequently reprinted, with a...

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9 Bibliographies

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pp. 209-212

THE first significant, and until recently the main, bibliography of Wilde was Stuart Mason (Christopher Millard), A Bibliography of Oscar Wilde (1914). While still containing a mine of useful information, it should be treated with...

10 General Bibliography

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pp. 213-260

Appendices 1

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pp. 261-

Appendix 2.

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pp. 262-263

APPENDIX 3: Letters of Dubious Authority

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pp. 264-266

Index of Names

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pp. 267-275


E-ISBN-13: 9780944318492
Print-ISBN-13: 9780944318492
Print-ISBN-10: 094431807X

Page Count: 288
Publication Year: 1993

Series Title: 1880-1920 British Authors Series