Picture of Dorian Gray Analysis

The Picture of Dorian Gray Analysis Paper
Oscar Wilde’s novel, The Picture of Dorian Gray, is an analysis of morality and how it can be changed through the influence of others. Oscar Wilde claims that, “One’s days were too brief to take the burden of another’s errors on one’s shoulders. Each man lived his own life, and paid his own price for living it” (215). Meaning that one’s moral character cannot be influenced by another. However, by observing certain interactions with the characters throughout the novel, The Picture of Dorian Gray, this statement can quickly be proven false. A character’s morality can be changed due to the visible influence of another, as was the cases of Dorian Gray, Alan Campbell, and Adrian Singleton.
The first point is that Dorian Gray was influenced by Lord Henry Wotton’s advice to live life to the fullest—have no regrets and do what you wish. Lord Henry believed in all forms of pleasure. It was Lord Henry who manipulated Dorian Gray into self-indulgence through the sharing of a book. “One hardly knew at times whether one was reading the spiritual ecstasies of some medieval saint or the morbid confessions of a modern sinner. It was a poisonous book.” (p. 142). Dorian’s life was forever changed by the ideas within the book. He instituted a double life. One life was in the light of society, while the other life was in the darkness. “That curiosity about life, which Lord Henry had first stirred in him, as they sat together in the garden of their friend, seemed to increase with gratification. The more he knew, the more he desired to know. He had mad hungers that grew more ravenous as he fed them.” (p. 145). If it were not for Lord Henry, Dorian Gray would have never slipped away from his adequate lifestyle into an exploited nature.
Secondly, Dorian Gray influenced Alan Campbell as he became an accomplice to murder. After murdering Basil Hallward, Dorian Gray asks Alan Campbell, a chemist, to dispose of the body. When Alan refuses, Dorian...