English, 2013 curriculum - Free topic 7: Oscar Wilde and Aestheticism

Course content

This course aims to give students an introduction to a broad range of Oscar Wilde’s writings: his poetry, his short fiction, his journalism, his only novel The Picture of Dorian Gray, his plays and his autobiographical De Profundis, written while he was imprisoned in Reading Gaol. Issues such as Hellenism, renaissance revival, new men and women, cosmopolitanism and the complex interrelationship between art and life will be discussed, as will Wilde’s ongoing dialogue with the great English writers of the past and the present.

Classes, with particular emphasis on reading primary and secondary texts, oral discussion and developing proficiency in English.

The basic course book will be:

  • The Complete Works of Oscar Wilde, introduction by Merlin Holland (London: HarperCollins, 2003) ISBN 0007144350 (ISBN13: 9780007144358)
  • In addition, students are also asked to purchase:
  • Nicholas Frankel (ed.), The Annotated Importance of Being Earnest (Cambridge MA.: Harvard University Press, 2015), ISBN 9780674048980
  • Michael Patrick Gillespie (ed.), Oscar Wilde: The Picture of Dorian Gray, The Norton Critical Edition (New York: Norton, 2006), ISBN: 978-0-393-92754-2
  • Walter Pater, Studies in the History of the Renaissance (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2010), ISBN: 9780199535071
  • Joris-Karl Huysmans, Against Nature (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009), ISBN: 9780199555116o
7,5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Criteria for exam assessment


  • Category
  • Hours
  • Class Instruction
  • 28
  • Preparation
  • 176,75
  • English
  • 204,75