The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde

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What possible themes may be developed in a comparative analysis of "Medea" by Euripides and "The Picture of Dorian Gray" by Oscar Wilde?

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Ashley Kannan eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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I think that one potential discussion point between both works might be how unlimited self- indulgence can be dangerous.  Both Medea and Dorian Gray engage in an extreme level of self- indulgence.  The latter does so in order to ensure that his own needs are met at the cost of others.  Dorian Gray's pursuit of self- happiness and his indulgence of the sense are done to please himself, but with others being hurt in the process.  Medea's sense of indulgence results from her incapability of seeing past her own hurt at the hands of Jason.  The indulgence of her own feeling of revenge results in the slaughter of her own children.  In this light, her own passion and feelings are the source of her self indulgence, proving to be extremely destructive to the fabric of Corinthian society.  For both protagonists, the indulgence of one's senses and passions leads to destructive consequences for others.  There might be a theme of how self centeredness can result in disaster for many.

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